and a brief (or at least relatively short) message
By the Rev. Ken Howard
Executive Director – The FaithX Project
It’s been quite a year, hasn’t it?
This is the year that proved the old proverb:
“If you want to make God laugh, tell God your plans.”
We all started this year with big plans:
In our congregational life, our work life, our family life, and our personal life.
Little did we expect that 2020 would bring:
A deadly, once-in-a-century, worldwide pandemic
that killed over 300,000 Americans and 1.64 million people worldwide.
A deep, prolonged, and worldwide economic downturn
(the second one of this century).
A national year of upheaval and racial reckoning
after the continued killing of unarmed black men (and women) by police.
A national election marked by divisive rhetoric
and post-election actions at the highest levels
that endangered the rule of law.
2020 was a year that overturned all of our expectations, plans, and paradigms of how to be and to do communities of faith.
And it’s hard to know whether God is laughing or crying
But I believe that there is grace to be found
in the upheaval that is 2020.
God has used all that has happened:
To teach us that being a faith community really is not about a building.
To help us discover innovative ways
of being faith communities and organizing our congregations
that we might never have figured out if we had a choice in the matter.
To bring our faith communities (and a broad swath of our country)
to a new level of commitment to the cause
of bringing about racial equity and dismantling systemic racism.
And all that has happened in our political life
has taught us many lessons about what we need to do to strengthen the institutions of democracy and the rule of law.
Our work will be cut out for us in 2021,
but I have faith that what we have learned will serve us well.
So Merry Christmas to you and yours from all of us at FaithX!
Ken, Steve, Mary, Darren, and Mary Beth