St Matthew's Episcopal Church of Pampa TX  
Rector Blog
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As I reflect on the violence that occurred in Charlottesville Virginia last week, I praise God for the love and guidance given to me by my Mom, my Dad, and my wonderful step-parents.  I was so fortunate to be raised in an environment that did not foster racism, arrogance, and hatred.

My Dad, born in 1920 in Richmond Virginia, was raised and educated there and graduated from the University of Virginia in Charlottesville.  No doubt he witnessed examples of racism and injustice, and God bless his soul, he never soiled the hearts of his children with the hate growing seeds of the racism he saw. 

My Stepfather, raised in the Milwaukee and Los Angelas areas, also did not plant seeds of bigotry.  Instead Kay planted seeds of responsibility, accountability, and the importance of making good choices. 

My Mom, even though she witnessed firsthand and sufferred through the atrocities of the WWII in Amsterdam while in her middle to late teenage years, developed a strong loving relationship with a German immigrant.  She planted seeds of forgiveness, seeds of perseverence, and the importance of growth and moving forward.  

My Stepmother, who as a young girl fled Prussia with her family on foot during WWII, planted those same seeds as well. 

Karen my lovely and lifelong loving partner, born in Northeastern Alabama but growing up in the diverse culture of military life, reinforced the freedom that comes from seeing everyone as a child of God, a brother, a sister, a friend of the world, despite their ethnic background or nationality.  Consequently, she and I were fortunate that we did not have a cycle of racism and hatred to break when raising our children. 

So, it is difficult for me to fathom, to understand what scares these Alt Right and White Extremist groups so much that their fear breeds such strong hatred and propensity to bring harm to their own brothers and sisters in the world.  All I can comprehend is that violence and hatred only breed more violence and hatred.  It does not matter who throws the first punch or who throws the last punch. The cycle will continue to repeat and repeat and repeat, until true understanding, love, and forgiveness come into the hearts of those who push Christ's love aside for their own glory. 

The difficult task of bringing this understanding and Christ's redemptive love to these misguided souls lies with us.  We must find a way to share the truth of Christ's unconditional love with them, and find a way to convince them that they share the same creator as all others in the world and pray that they open their hearts to the love Christ freely offers.

 

May the peace and love of God be upon us all!

Fr. Mark

 


 
Contact Info Address: 727 W. Browning Avenue, Pampa, Texas   Phone #: (806) 665-0701 Contact Us       Members Area
 
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