The Fatigue of Waiting

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” Until the dawn rises and darkness is dispelled, God’s Word lights our way. Spirit of God, speaking in our hearts.”

Covid Fatique is now a thing. We are tired of enduring this pandemic. We are tired of being good — wearing our masks, social distancing, missing out on so many of the fun things we used to do. And now the pandemic is surging and restrictions we thought we were ready to leave behind are back again in full force. People around the country groan, whine, and complain. Some go so far as to protest their local governments.

Nevertheless, we know that we need to take these precautious if we are to mange the infection rate. We must keep it down. Medical professionals are begging us to take this extra care so our ICU beds are not overwhelmed, so doctors and nurses are not exhausted into collapse. Restrictions are necessary, but still we complain.

Waiting is not something we enjoy. We have never been good at it as a general rule of life. I turn to Psalm 13 and hear the psalmist say, “How long, O God?” and turn to Habakkuk, a prophet, as he cries out to God, “How long, O God? I cry for help but you do not listen!” Humanity as a whole becomes exhausted when relief seems to take a long time to reach us.

Perhaps this is a good opportunity for us to ponder another kind of waiting. What is it like to be a black or brown person in our country waiting for unjust systems and structures to change? Waiting to be free of the restrictions that prevent them from the fullness of life? Waiting to enjoy the same rights and freedoms as those who are said to be white? How long have they been told to be patient, that the arc of the universe bends toward justice?

We have endured a mere matter of months of restrictions due to a virus and are exhausted with it all. How exhausting it must be to have waited hundreds of years for unjust systems to change, for unkind attitudes to change, for the benefits of equal justice under the law to be a real thing.

Our Ecumenical Catholic Communion wants to be part of the change. Here is our statement:

Our nation is in desperate need of racial healing and transformation. The healing process cannot begin until the truth of our country’s past and present sins are confronted. As people of Christian faith, we acknowledge and renounce both past and present dehumanizing, oppressive, abusive, enslaving, violent and lethal actions and inactions against African American communities. We proclaim that it is time for metanoia – turning away from evil and turning toward God’s liberating love.

As members of the ECC, we believe in the power of communication to heal and that the search for truth can lead to justice. As such, we pray that our country will begin a process of truth-seeking that will lead to long-term reconciliation. We in the ECC pledge to begin a deliberate and transparent truth-telling process within our own faith communities.

Jesus, the heart of our faith, lived and died for love. He showed no partiality. God’s community is diverse and totally integrated. We pray for God’s guidance and mercy as we work to attain racial justice and build the beloved community, walking together the path paved with truth, love, equity, and justice. In the prophetic tradition, we boldly proclaim, “Let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.” (Amos 5:24)

My beloved ones, be light in the darkness until the dawn rises.

Bishop Kedda

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