As tragically as the evening began — with the death of a young man and an officer forever changed as anyone is when we take another life — the night into this morning did not end in tragedy. And so as all the things that were wrong about last night are being necessarily chronicled, I want to stop and ask why things didn’t end in tragedy. And when I do, even on this rainy day where we are so aware of loss, I believe there is hope. So what happened? Three things.
First, the young leaders of Millennial Activists United, the women and men who have been protesting on S. Florissant, stepped up. They organized. They kept the crowd in that place of unpeaceful and nonviolent action that is so difficult and so necessary. They did not back down and they helped the crowd authentically express their rage and pain without violence.
Second, the police showed restraint toward the protesters. They gave space. They did not make mass arrests or brutalize the protesters. They acted in ways to contain but not escalate.
Third, the clergy found our lanes to drive in. We recognized that first, last and always what we bring is our charge to gather the community in prayer. We prayed with the boy’s parents. After the crime scene was opened up, we gathered in prayer around where he lay and reclaimed the ground. Then we split into two groups with some going with the protesters and supporting the MAU leaders and others of us (myself included) going to the morgue to be with the father as he identified the body and provide prayer and pastoral support there.
Read it all at the blog Come Together.
Christ Church Cathedral offers Non-violent resistance training to members and community.
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