“He has shown you, o mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God” (Micah 6:8). This and “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind…[and] love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:37, 39) summarize the basic requirements of the Christian life.
The parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37) further clarifies that all human beings are neighbors in Christ. We are called to love all without prejudice and show compassion toward anyone in need.
In that spirit, we acknowledge the pain that recent events such as the tragic deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and so many others have caused people across this nation and beyond. We weep with and pray for the grieving families and all who have been affected, which we know includes many brothers and sisters in our own conference—fellow church members, colleagues, family, friends, and neighbors in our communities. Each of you are of immeasurable value in the eyes of Christ and in ours.
We condemn the evils of racism, violence, oppression and other such injustices, in all their forms. And we encourage every Iowa-Missouri Conference church, school, and member to cultivate multi-ethnic relationships that build connection, understanding and mutual respect. Share together. Pray together. Grow together. And may the love of Christ, through the power of the Holy Spirit, help us to live out Paul’s words in Galatians 3:28, that “there is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”