This prayer opened the Sunday worship service at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of the Peninsula, on Sunday, August 13, 2017, one day after the white supremacist events in Charlottesville, Virginia,
We gather together in pain, sorrow, horror and anger, but also always with hope. The events of yesterday in the city of Charlottesville, in our own Commonwealth have shocked and saddened us.
We condemn hate, bigotry and violence and recoil from them. We take heart in the reflection that these are not the values of the vast majority of people, but we also acknowledge that they arise in many. We also recognize that the racial violence energizing yesterday’s atrocities has deep roots in our society and our nation’s history which we must work to overcome.
We feel for all those who have been victims of yesterday’s violence and all those who have suffered over the history of this land from racial, religious and other forms of bigotry. We affirm the “inherent worth and dignity of every person”.
We must speak of our rejection of White Nationalism, Nazism, Fascism and all other philosophies and institutions based on hatred and division however they may try to disguise themselves.
We sorrow for those whose souls are filled with the type of hate that allows them to embrace violence in securing their own superiority, failing to recognize their own “worth and dignity” unless it be based on the degradation of others.
Lastly we recognize our own failings, great and small rededicating ourselves to the good of the human family.
Jim Sanderson currently serves as president of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of the Peninsula.