The events of the last week tragically remind us of the devastating impact hatred continues to have on our nation. We recognize that these horrific acts of violence far too often have a common thread—white nationalism, which is the wrong and sinful belief in white superiority, and the warped desire to rule our country by and only for the benefit of white people. White nationalism in the United States is stoked by daily political diatribes, easily-accessed hate-filled ideas, and faulty theology. We acknowledge a direct connection between white nationalism and Christian nationalism—the dangerous falsehood that the United States was meant to be a country that privileges and protects the lives and beliefs of white Christians above all others. We denounce these ideas as heresy.
These wrongful philosophies tear our county and our communities apart. We know with certainty that they most directly harm people of color and immigrants, but we also state clearly that these ideas damage and diminish all of us. We call those who embrace tenets of white supremacy and violence to leave these death-dealing movements behind and rejoin us in the affirmation of life and human dignity.
As people of faith, we have a sacred responsibility to speak clearly and frequently about the humanity of people of color and of immigrants, affirming that all people are equally created in the image and likeness of God. We need to speak promptly when we see acts that dehumanize others, particularly those impacting marginalized communities. We build our holy vision of a world in which every person is valued. We affirm our God-given values that honor diversity, cast off fear, welcome the stranger, protect the vulnerable, and make peace among the nations.
This week, in addition to images of bloodshed, we can also see the streams of people taking to the streets and marching, and crowds holding candles in silent vigil. There are so many more of us who recognize the sacredness of life in all its beauty and diversity. We are not alone in our desire for a world of peace; we have each other. We are not powerless; we can act together. Each day presents new opportunities for us to build communities in which all are safe, all are valued, and all belong. We do this for the soul of our nation and the lives of its people.