On this Independence Day, when we celebrate the birth of our nation and honor what that means to us, there is division in the air and on the ground. I find it a most appropriate time to bring discussion to the state of the union and I’m happy that the church to which I belong, the Presbyterian Church USA, recently clarified some political positions. It is not mandated that all churches within the denomination to affirm the declaration that was made, but it is hoped that it will bring about some fruitful discussion and a careful consideration of where the Spirit is leading us as Christians.
“As confessing Christians, we trust God, whom we know through Jesus Christ, in whose name we pray as others pray in other names.
We are obligated to declare our concerns about the direction towards autocracy that our country is taking.
We say Yes to God’s power of love and justice for the neighbor as well as the self, and we say No to demonic power that urges hate of the other, scatters blame, and creates civic discord.
We say Yes to our imperfect democracy with one person, one vote, and No to any corruption of our elections.
We say Yes to universal health care and No to care based on the ability to pay.
We say Yes to safe schools, houses of worship, and public gathering places; and No to civilian access to assault and/or military-style weapons.
We say Yes to core human values and No to dividing our humanity by ideology and partisanship.
We say Yes to bridges and preservation of families and No to walls.
We say Yes to affirming and celebrating the full spectra of human identity and No to discrimination and bigotry.
We say: ‘In life, and in death we belong to God.’”