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Beloved:

Last weekend we witnessed something I didn’t expect to see in 2017: Torch carrying, white-nationalists stalking the campus of the University of Virginia, chanting neo-Nazi rhetoric. As night turned to day, protests and rallies continued, leading to the death of a beloved child of God, Heather Heyer. This came in tandem with the vandalism of the Holocaust Memorial in Boston just days later.

I wish I could write to say that this remains solely in the past, but I cannot. We know that a permit has been pulled for a “Rally for Free Speech” this Saturday on Boston Common. It is impossible to know exactly how many will show up, and what they will say, but there is reason to believe that much of the same hateful rhetoric espoused in Charlottesville will be given voice in the commonwealth.

If you’re wondering how best to respond, first: Pray. Pray for those who, as the Gospel says, defile themselves by what comes out of their mouths. Pray for marginalized people and communities who are directly victimized by hateful ideologies and actions. Pray for those of us with the power to make a difference in this world, that we might act faithfully and wisely.

If you feel called to respond with your body, all are invited to an uplifting, non-confrontational, affirming worship service at Old South Church in Copley Square at 8:00 am Saturday morning. The General Minister and President of the United Church of Christ, the Rev. John Dorhauer will speak, and there will be music of love and solidarity.

As I do not know what Saturday will bring, I do not know entirely what I will say when we gather for worship on Sunday morning, but I do know this: The moral compass God has given each of us does not spin wildly; it points true north, assured and steadfast. It points towards the Kingdom of God, which we are each called to name, proclaim and build, as promised in our baptismal vows. It points away from the sins of hatred, bigotry, racism, false moral equivalency, and oppression.

As our banner proclaims: Let us “love without walls.” Let us love boldly and passionately, breaking through any attempts to divide the Body of Christ. Let us go into both our sanctuary and the world, prepared to love more fully than the day before.

As always, should you need anything during this time, please do not hesitate to reach out to me or another member of our staff.

Love,

Pastor Alex
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Congratulations, South Church! The results are in and you did it for the third year in a row! A nearly zero waste all church picnic. With just a little set up help from the Green Team, the church picnic fed over 100 people and at the end took home our serving dishes, drained out all leftover liquids, recycled 4 bags of cans through the Boy Scouts, composted 3 13-gal barrels of food leftovers, re-washed plates, cups, and silverware to have for another day/year and had “very little" trash leftover, something like a small 8-gallon bagful! Wally was excited about the whole plan and helped set it all up at 6:30am and was quite impressed with the results! “Good job” to all involved! ... See MoreSee Less

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Loved ones, if you're wondering what you can do, how you can help, how to stand up for justice, here's an opportunity. Jenn will be here at 7pm - come and stand in solidarity with our siblings in Charlottesville and with God's beloved everywhere. ... See MoreSee Less

Showing up for Love and Charlottesville Solidarity

August 13, 2017, 7:00pm - August 13, 2017, 8:00pm

Show up for love over fear and hate... Show up for love over white supremacy at Shawsheen Square, Andover. We will show our solidarity with the counter-protestors and victims in Charlottesville. We encourage you to bring candles, appropriate signs, and your solidarity and love. #DefendCVille #LoveOverFear Join friends from Merrimack Valley SURJ, Andover Area Solidarity Group, UU Congregation in Andover, North Parish North Andover, West Parish Andover, South Church Andover, Ballard Vale United Church, and more!

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See everyone for worship at 9:30, then discussion and song at 10:45. ... See MoreSee Less

Beloved, This weekend we saw God's own beloved torn down as a result of racism and white supremacy. Following worship at 10:45 we will meet in the chapel to pray, to sing, to talk, to act. We will lift up our siblings of color, we will denounce hatred and we will shine the light of Christ's love that will never be burnt out by hatred and bigotry. Come, beloved, for hate has no home here, for we are called to love without limit. See you tomorrow. #blacklivesmatter #lovewithoutwalls #hatehasnohomehere

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Beloved,

This weekend we saw God's own beloved torn down as a result of racism and white supremacy. Following worship at 10:45 we will meet in the chapel to pray, to sing, to talk, to act. We will lift up our siblings of color, we will denounce hatred and we will shine the light of Christ's love that will never be burnt out by hatred and bigotry.

Come, beloved, for hate has no home here, for we are called to love without limit. See you tomorrow.

#blacklivesmatter #lovewithoutwalls #hatehasnohomehere
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