I wanted to put this out before it moved from the front of my thinking. A few of us have been very concerned about the increase in violent activity in our city (here is a different recent post about this). The question I have been grappling with is what is the church’s response to such issues. To be honest, the complexity of urban violence is beyond me. What can be done? What can I do? I am not sure.
One thing we (Eric Blauer and Liv Larson Andrews) arrived at was we did not want to become desensitized to how these brutal acts fractured shalom. I believe many Americans are becoming fatigued by the constant cascade
of news of this kind; that they are in a way de-selecting it for their possible choices of issues to be concerned about.
What we concluded was we wanted to publically grieve and
passionately intercede. In real time, that meant that we would go humbly stand in front of “The Hop” (the location of a recent murder) and do a Liturgy of Peace. It wasn’t against anyone or even to gain some attention for our
activism. It really was for us (because our hearts are broken) and for God
(because we believe that prayer is more than just aligning ourselves with God’s
way – it actually is efficacious). We wept…we interceded and we marked the spot with the sign of the cross.
I have to admit, I am a person of great inner tension. Sometimes I come from some activity and wonder what it was for? Was it for me or for Jesus? Was it healthy or stilted. In short, I’m a bit of a tortured soul. But I want to testify that praying for our city on Monroe St. on Friday at 5:30 with two fantastic ladies might have been one of the “purest” acts of Christian service I’ve been involved with for some time. I’m grateful.
Christ have mercy! May shalom rest on Spokane.