For the last four weeks we’ve gathered for our diocesan wide book group reading through Presiding Bishop Michael Curry’s “Love is the Way.” Each week we’ve pulled out an excerpt from one of the chapters as a place to start for conversation. Here’s one we reflected on last night — one that bears wider reflection.
How do we make “out of many one” without obliterating anybody? That’s not just the church’s challenge. It is our nation’s challenge. It is the world’s challenge. How do we walk together as siblings — united by some ancient and venerated values and hopes –when we also have significant differences and disagreements?
We need e pluribus unum now more than ever — because if we don’t work together will likely work against all of our interest. The large scale problems we face as humans will not be solved by isolation when we’re busy wagging fingers at each other. We can’t move away from the nightmare and closer to the dream. The planet is suffering, and if we don’t heal her we’re about to feel the blunt impact — some more than others — but eventually all of us. We are all in this together … yet we are challenged by divisions that keep us apart.
For all those who feel unheard, ignored, and under siege, these divisions are particularly painful and real. Powerful forces exploit that pain and here we are: Wrought by extremism. Mistrustful. Punching each other in the face in so many ways. And above all, doubting our shared future. That’s one thing that we can all be sure of: whatever the future holds it will be shared. We will live together as family or perish as fools.
But God is not finished with us yet. Love has not left this land there are many of us who are ready to move forward with one voice that says “No more! We choose love.”
To love does not mean we have to agree. But maybe agreeing to love is the greatest agreement. And the only one that ultimately matters, because it makes a future possible.“Love is the Way”, Chapter 9: The Real E Pluribus Unum