Standing in solidarity against anti-Asian hate
Friends in ministry in the Greater Northwest Episcopal Area,
Where does love live, if not in our hearts and in our relationships with God and our neighbors?
My heart is heavy with this week’s news of a young white man’s racial hatred targeting Asian and Asian American women for murder in Atlanta. Is there no limit to the depths of hatred and inhumanity?
What insanity blames innocent fellow citizens for a virus that spreads silently, putting people of every nation and race at risk? No-one is safe. No-one is to blame. If one suffers, we all suffer together.
My heart overflows with love for the women who lost their lives, for elders attacked on sidewalks, for passers-by spit at. Love lives where people lay their lives down for their neighbors, not where people violate the dignity, safety and very lives of their neighbors out of irrational fear and hatred.
Listen with me to the reflections of my friend and colleague, Bishop Bob Hoshibata of the Desert Southwest Conference, who said this week: “We must confront the ways that harm presents itself: whether it be ‘innocent’ re-telling of jokes, to perpetuating racist rhetoric related to COVID-19, or violent actions to innocent people, we must acknowledge that these are things that fuel bias and prejudice against those of Asian heritage.”
I affirm the words from Asian and Asian American Bishops of the United Methodist Church, the New Federation of Asian American United Methodists, the Asian American Language Ministry Plan, along with other Asian American leaders and academics of the United Methodist Church, including some from the Greater NW Area: “We ask that all United Methodists read again and live out our own Charter for Racial Justice which states that all persons are of equal value in the sight of God and that racism is a rejection of the teachings of Jesus Christ.”
I encourage you to participate in this webinar, March 24 at 4 p.m. PDT, hosted by Asian-American friends and colleagues in the California-Nevada Conference.
May the LOVE of God continue to light our path in these dark days,
Bishop Elaine JW Stanovsky