In the Summer our Sunday service is 11am. There is no 5pm service until September.
A note on recent events in Charleston and a recent newsletter (click here)
There are many churches which, when they hear the phrase Black Lives Matter quickly and nervously respond, no wait All Lives Matter! It is important to note that though great strides have been made toward equality in this country the legacy of white supremacy still pervades our land though it has now become part of a code language sounded in bytes like the elimination of progressive taxation, smaller government (starve the beast), wars on drugs (mass incarceration), stop and frisk, states rights, and on an on. These policies and others like them place common citizens against one another in a battle for scarce resources and scapegoating and demonizing flourishes. Conservative mainstream news outlets spew hatred and lies and its wrong. Structural racism is as American as apple pie though the former is unfulfilling and real people die because of it, others die morally. Thats why we say Black Lives Matter, full stop. It is important to say in our context.
Churches properly stand for the dignity and freedom of all in particular standing with the most vulnerable in our society. We might remember that the religion of Jesus began as a confrontation with the lies of power and the myth of domination and violence perpetrated by the Roman Empire against a minority people. It ought to be no different today. We affirm black lives matter and we call on each one of us, in particular those who identify as white to begin a fierce moral inventory of their attitudes and affiliations politically and socially and think about the consequences of our world-views, what we say in private, and of all the choices we make. There are no angels here; nobody has a monopoly on good, everyone is trying to make it, everyone feels squeezed but that doesn’t let anyone off the hook. Black and brown folks have been dying to long and many white folks just mourn a bit and move on. Next time we hear of a solidarity rally for justice bring your kids, or if you have none go yourself. Act at your job, at your school, in your life. Call yourself and others out in this sickness. We need to take responsibility for events like those in Charleston which are not freakish unusual events but part of our common, sad and regrettable violent history. Its proper to mourn and then its time to take stock and find ways to act. It is our responsibility to leave something better than this for our children. If we stake a step towards honesty and vulnerability God’s grace, love and forgiveness will do the rest.
The Rev. John Merz
Vicar of the Church if the Ascension