Being Fearful

Dear Sisters & Brothers in Christ,

At the Men's Day panel discussion one of the topics was how they handled their teenage sons and the police. Congressman Clay went so far as to take his sons into the local precinct, introduce them to everyone, and show the police their car. He did admit that most people probably could not do this, but it's certainly not a bad idea. What they all agreed on though was that regardless of their occupation, their bank account, their address or what their sons drove, they were all afraid every time their sons left the house. Judge mason quoted a study that backs up what we all assume, that, regardless of race, and regardless of how fairly they think they see them, most Americans have a bias against young Black males. He was even instrumental in requiring the City police to take a test each year that helps reveal their biases. He didn't have the same luck with the County police, so you may want to write a letter to your local precinct inquiring about this. It may not solve the problem, but as David said, it may help an officer or two to pause for a moment before they simply react and give into that bias.

Tuesday's Gospel was the story of Mary being fearful of the dangers her own son was facing. She was worried that Jesus was angering the wrong people and that He was going to get into serious trouble. So she gathered up His brothers and went to bring Him home. Jesus response, if you recall, "Who are by mother and brother? Those who do the Will of God are mother and brother and sister to me." It may not be easy, and like Mary we may want to just keep our sons (and daughters) at home, but we can't. We must submit to the Will of God and let them find their way in the world. Every parent must one day let go. But you know church, that doesn't mean that we shouldn't do everything in our power to make them as safe as we can. We must certainly pray, but we should also work at bringing darkness to Light, transform fear into trust, and hate into love, that all God's Children can go forth without fear. And remember church, each of them, all of them are our "neighbors," our "sons & daughters."

In the Redeemer,

Fr. Rick