Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote these words:
We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied to a single garment of destiny.
Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.
There are some things in our social system to which all of us ought to be maladjusted.
Hatred and bitterness can never cure the disease of fear, only love can do that.
We must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression, and retaliation.
The foundation of such a method is love.
Before it is too late, we must narrow the gaping chasm between our proclamations of peace and our lowly deeds which precipitate and perpetuate war.
One day we must come to see that peace is not merely a distant goal that we seek but a means by which we arrive at that goal.
We must pursue peaceful ends through peaceful means.
We shall hew out of a mountain of despair, a stone of hope.
In reflecting on MLK’s wise insights, I can visualize the “mountain of despair” that so many people in this country have been experiencing since early in the year. Despair is defined by Merriam-Webster as “the utter loss of hope.” The year 2020 seems to feel that way to many of us.
While circumstances vary for each individual, collectively we have experienced anxiety about a pandemic that is on a ravaging path throughout our country and the world. We have witnessed the injustice of racial inequities and violence in our communities and the devastation of wildfires, hurricanes, and flooding leaving people without homes and possessions. We feel the interpersonal strain and alienation fueled by the bitter political divide of the times. The mountain of despair has grown enormous and the needs are great. But peace and love and hope are still present–ever abiding, though sometimes we must look hard to find them through the haze.
Even in our virtual, distanced state, this Unitarian Universalist community offers each of us a network of mutuality from which we can draw support, love and caring, encouragement and hope, even peace. We are fortunate to have weekly opportunities to share worship, learn and grow as Unitarian Universalists, pursue justice, and practice generosity. Your UUCA leaders are working diligently to provide these opportunities now, with an eye for a bright and fulfilling future for this congregation and the wider community.
Thank you for being a part of this vital network of mutuality, through which we find hope and bring about the change we visualize. May it be so.
Laurel Amabile, Board of Trustees