Looking back over eighty-five years, an amazing panorama appears.
My childhood impressions of life during the Great Depression abruptly changed to fear, turmoil, and social disruption during World War II. These powerful memories are superseded by the vast changes that followed. Transport changed from small aeroplanes to supersonic jets and large passenger jets — the world is only hours away, instead of days or even weeks. Motor cars have developed ever-increasing comfort and luxury, even to the point of self-driving vehicles. In medicine, new medications and techniques in surgery produce results which would have seemed miraculous just a few short years ago. Communication services have transformed from taking six to seven days to deliver a letter to taking a few seconds with the push of a button. Television programs now feature instant pictures of events right across the wide world. Using technology, man was even able to walk on the moon.
Yes, it has been an interesting, sometimes exhilarating, sometimes frightening span of years. Sadly, I note also that the eternal values Jesus asked of his followers seem to be less and less honoured. Self-interest and material values seem to have pushed spiritual values way into the background. Surely this is the time for Christians to affirm the vital importance of compassion, integrity, tolerance, justice, and truth as the foundation of a fair and free society. Jesus, in his practice of unconditional love, set the benchmarks for us.
Our resolve must be different. My prayer is that we have finally reached a tipping point. My hope is that when the protests fade and the marches slow that our will as a church to truly eradicate the scourge of racism won’t dissipate but grows even stronger.”
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