Speaking for the elected officers of the United Church of Christ, General Minister and President the Rev. John Dorhauer issues a moral call for healing following the Nov. 3 U.S. general elections. Here’s the text of the statement:
As we gather to worship, we acknowledge that we are a church and a nation in need of God’s providential mercy.
A political battle has been waged within a continuing global pandemic and a domestic pandemic of race-hate whose wounds are both ancient and fresh.
Worshiping with us today are those who are trying hard to celebrate a political outcome and those who are trying to heal from it. It is hard to celebrate any outcome when the margins are so thin and come at the end of years of widening distrust between political rivals. It is hard to heal when the tactics we engaged in to win these elections were so, in a word, unkind. We have opened wounds here that will take time, trust, and empathy to heal.
We claim Jesus as our guide. He is for us the embodiment and incarnation of God’s eternal and undying love. We know that there is nothing in this world that can separate us from that love of God known in Jesus.
As leaders in the wider church, covenant partners with all who worship as the United Church of Christ, we ask only one thing this day: let us all pause to ask what love will ask next of us.
We have arisen as a community of faith within a democracy that empowers every citizen with a voice and a vote. Our voices of late have been hard to hear - choruses of shouting at each other have often replaced the gentle and deep listening to each other that engenders lasting relationship and trust. Narratives of mistrust and division have replaced our more endearing narrative of the common good, shared interest, and mutual ministry.
We call upon the members of our shared household to center on the healing power of God’s redeeming love. Our mission can certainly be enhanced by political outcomes – but it isn’t resolved by them. Our mission is to love all, welcome all, and seek justice for all. The world will come to know we are Christians by our love. Let our singular commitment be to a love that surpasses all understanding, heals all wounds, and restores all hope.
The National Officers of the United Church of Christ
John C. Dorhauer, General Minister and President
Traci Blackmon, Associate General Minister
Karen Georgia Thompson, Associate General Minister