I remember a Presbytery meeting during my first years as a rural pastor decades ago when – at the end of the meeting during “new business” – a woman stood and said, “I make a motion against the existence of homosexuality.”
Before the Moderator could respond, another person – a pastor who happened to be sitting next to me – stood up and said, “I make a motion against the existence of night.”
Both were ruled out of order and we ended the meeting with a prayer.
As much as someone might try, we cannot erase God’s children no matter who they are just because we wish they didn’t exist anymore than we can erase the night.
The podcast Pantsuit Politics is one of my favorites. Sarah (“from the left”) and Beth (“from the right“) discuss the news of the day with “no shouting, no insults, and plenty of nuance.” Thanks be to God.
On Tuesday, they were discussing the issue of “the caravan” of thousands of people from Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala hiking across Mexico and headed north to the Texas border. They agreed that our government cannot pretend like these human beings are going away anytime soon. I don’t remember whether it was Sarah or Beth who said it, but one of our nuanced podcasters said: “We cannot stop desperate people. Give it up.”
Both agreed that if our government acts as if this immigration issue will solve itself when we threaten people with military violence, they will still come. Desperate people will not be deterred.
They compared it to an oncoming tornado.
Imagine if a huge tornado was barreling towards Texas and our response was to say, “That tornado should not come. Tell it to go away.” Obviously the tornado would not turn back.
Nor will these at-risk human beings turn back. Nor will transgender human beings turn back.
Sarah and Beth said this: “What if we said to Mexico, ‘How can our two countries work together to safely transition people? How can we work together to address the security needs of our country, the security needs of these human beings, the basic needs of these human beings, and everyone’s economic interests in this process?'”
Simply deciding that people will go away is not only ridiculous; it’s unholy. And if violence befalls this “caravan” of thousands of humans, there will only be more people in more caravans who will continue to seek security in other countries.
The very first book of holy scripture says that people are created in God’s image. God will not be erased. And even if there are human efforts to erase those created in God’s image, those efforts will ultimately fail. We can fight God on this or we can address the needs of the vulnerable and treat people as we would treat the angels.
Church: what are we doing to love the people God loves?