A week ago we heard from the President and then from so many other commentators about the status of the nation, I thought I might as well weigh in.
Here are my thoughts about what makes America great, though some of these things are missing, and, therefore, the state of the union is not great, but it is alive and well…on our way to reclaiming, reviving, renewing—one person to another, one meeting at a time.
At RSPC, we serve sandwich bags to people who have little money, no housing, and no place to use the bathroom. The state of the union is inhospitable when we cannot find in our common purse a way to make sure everyone has a roof over their heads and food to eat. Thanks be to God for the charitable contributions of religious institutions and other non-profits which share the abundance of creation with others in acts of justice. One which we support is Intown Collaborative Ministries.
At RSPC, we meet men and women asking for help with buying medicines and who are clearly in need of medical support. The state of the union is cruel when we cannot find in our common purse a way to make sure everyone has the basic healthcare they need and access to the medicines that cure or mitigate symptoms. Thanks be to God for the many non-profit hospitals and clinics that serve the uninsured with mercy and support from charitable contributions and grants. One which we support is Mercy Care street medicine services.
At RSPC, we celebrate diversity. Through our newest advocacy and educational program we are learning the gifts and needs of our immigrant neighbors. In additions we have chosen to affirm and celebrate the gifts of our LGBTQIA+ neighbors. The state of the union is inhumane when we cannot find the common humility to afford human rights to all without regard for nationality or gender identity, or sexual orientation. Thanks be to God for the work of so many individuals and agencies who advocate and provide for people in need, whoever they are. One which we support is Presbyterian Disaster Assistance refugee ministries.
At RSPC, we believe that finding common ground for the common good is not just a nice slogan; it is a vision and a call to join together to create a state of the union that is better today than yesterday and tomorrow will be even better. We believe that common ground is not the lowest common denominator; it is the highest human connection. We believe that the common good is not a redistribution of wealth making people poorer; it is a sharing of abundant resources that makes everyone richer.
At RSPC, we rejoice in each other. Because we have found that differences are not insurmountable, our similarities are not binding, and our intentions are benevolent. The state of the union includes all these things as well. We must quit hiding it behind the fear-based malevolence we so often hear about in social media, in the news, and face-to-face. We do not downplay the brokenness of our union. It is real. We simply believe it can be overcome, wherever 2 or 3 are willing to gather and listen and trust in the underlying good that dwells in each of us. That is our vision. That is what keeps us coming back together when failure stares us in the face.