My heart is sick.
You’ve probably heard by now about the cold-blooded murder of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis Police. A confession: the first time this news came across my screen, my scarcity-trained mind responded “I am too busy working on immigration justice to have time to think about police violence.” The impulse to look away and go on with my day was strong.
That’s the way that the powers that be want it. But God is working on me, healing me bit by bit from the broken racial patterns of our culture. Here’s the thing: the soul sickness that allowed the murder of George Floyd is the same soul sickness that is leading ICE to allow immigrants to die of COVID in packed detention centers, the same soul sickness that is deporting migrant youth in the middle of the night without telling their families, and the same soul sickness that has seized the moment of this pandemic to close our borders even to the most desperate asylum cases.
At the Hostel for Seeking Souls, we believe that God is in the business of healing and liberation, for those suffering these harms and those in whose names they are being committed. We believe that God is in the business of healing and liberating us together.
There are four opportunities to lean into that healing coming up. Read on for information about a book conversation, a Bible study, a webinar, and a protest.
Bible Study with Bethany Ringdal
I have had several people lately ask me to lead a Bible study for Bible beginners and the spiritually curious, and want to extend this invitation to the Hostel for Seeking Souls community. We will be meeting by Zoom on Wednesday nights from 7:30-9:00, starting on June 3. The format will be discussion based and open-ended, with no required homework (although I may send optional readings for those who want to gain more context). I’m really into Jesus, but I promise no hard sell. Click below if you’re interested in joining this group, and please feel free to share with anyone you know who may be interested. RSVP for Book Study
Book Group – Dear America: Notes of an Undocumented Citizen
The Saint Paul Interfaith Coalition for Immigrant Justice, of which the Hostel for Seeking Souls is a member, is forming interfaith groups to read and discuss Dear America, Notes of an Undocumented Citizen by Jose Antonio Vargas. The Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist tackles one of the defining issues of our time: what it means to be undocumented, to not have a home, to live always in hiding, in fear of being found, to have your family torn apart and sent away. One discussion has already been held under the leadership of Mt. Zion. It was a wonderful gathering of a number of Saint Paul congregations, and we’d love to do it again.Saint Paul Reformation will host a book discussion group on Sunday, June 14 at 2:00 pm. Please RSVP at email@example.com and you will be sent a ZOOM link and study questions for the group gathering. For more information and if you would like a copy of the book, contact Sandy and Tim Iverson at 651-238-7724. RSVP for Book Group
Honk-in for COVID-19 Release
Join us for a honk in at Governor Walz’s Mansion to demand the release of prisoners, amongst the most vulnerable to COVID-19. Months into this pandemic our loved ones are still not being given the basic right to social distance – which requires the release of 2,500 people.
Wisconsin has released 1600 prisoners in on technical violators – Minnesota almost none. Yet our Governor wrote an editorial in Time Magazine saying that we shouldn’t have such people in prison). You say you care about immigrants yet hundreds remain in ICE detention. Governor: practice what you preach! #FreeOurPeople #FreeThemAll
Bethany will be there, and would be very happy to see you.
This Saturday, June 6 from 1-3. Details here.
Webinar – Becoming the Body of Christ Where All Bodies are Valued
Here is a recording of a webinar hosted by leaders in our denomination (including the presiding Bishop) last week about the ELCA’s resolution condemning white supremacy. Our denomination is the whitest in the country, despite three decades of statements. We have a lot of work to do to live into God’s multicultural dream of a just community. Watch the Recording.
May the God of the wilderness give you a spirit of boldness and good courage as you walk this way. May your heart be full and well. May you find goodness in community and give goodness to community. May you live in resurrection, with the whole earth and all its peoples, now and forever. Amen.