In an essay on the Religion News Service and the Episcopal News Service, President of the House of Deputies, the Reverend Gay Clark Jennings discusses “Why reconciliation with President-elect Trump may be impossible for some Christians.”
Our Baptismal Covenant, she argues, will always bring us into conflict with secular power.
We might begin by examining our default response to conflict. The desire to foster “reconciliation” is deep in Christians’ bones, and it crops up in just about every statement about the election I have seen from a mainline church leader, but too often the church preaches reconciliation when what we really want is to avoid unpleasantness or get approval from worldly powers and principalities.
President-elect Trump’s rhetoric and his behavior indicate that he does not regard significant numbers of other Americans as his equal, or even as fully human.
His vice president, Mike Pence, believes in a form of conversion therapy for gay and lesbian people that has been repudiated by every mainstream psychological organization in the country and outlawed in five states.
Reconciliation, then, may be out of reach, and it may be pastorally inappropriate for the church even to suggest it to people who now have legitimate reasons to be afraid.
“Reconciliation,” writes Jennings, “is holy work. Resistance is too. We need to watch and wait to see what God is calling us to do.”
Read her article here.
Photograph of Gay Clark Jennings © MORT TUCKER PHOTOGRAPHY