Engaging while our city hosts the DNC

Unimpressed

Like many of you that will actually read this post, I am utterly unimpressed with the Republican National Convention last week in Cleveland—including how the police state handled demonstrators. This article describes a little bit about why it was kind of quiet, despite the national unrest/love/rage/ambivalence over Donlad J…”A big part of the reason was that protesters just did not descend on Cleveland in the numbers predicted. Black Lives Matter instead devoted its efforts last week to occupying the police union headquarters of New York and Washington, D.C., and many progressive groups opted to instead put their energies toward protesting the Democratic National Convention (DNC) in Philadelphia this week.

I’m feeling pretty unimpressed with the Democrats as they have begun their attempt to get people excited to not elect Trump, and see if more people will slide into support for Clinton and her new running mate and Asian Free-Trade advocate Tom Kaine. I am impressed, however, by how many of my connections in Philadelphia want to re-frame the discourse from talking about how electing one person will lead to the end of the world and the other to paradise. I know most people aren’t actually that deluded, but the anti-Donlad rhetoric could use some feet in the streets rather than just internet comments.

Psalm 150 and Praising

I’m moved by the final Psalm (150) this morning.

Praise the Lord!

Praise God in his sanctuary!
    Praise God in his fortress, the sky!
Praise God in his mighty acts!
    Praise God as suits his incredible greatness!
Praise God with the blast of the ram’s horn!
    Praise God with lute and lyre!
Praise God with drum and dance!
    Praise God with strings and pipe!
Praise God with loud cymbals!
    Praise God with clashing cymbals!
Let every living thing praise the Lord!

Praise the Lord!

I’m going to be praising the Lord Jesus this week with drum and dance/marching. I hope you feel like you can get into some of this stuff, even if it may not be your thing. These politicians and their corporate sponsors have come to our city, and I’d like to meet them with the praise of God and assertion of embodied alternatives to red/blue binary conversations towards moving hearts and minds.

Opportunities

A bunch of Circle of Hope folks asked for some of us to curate opportunities to get in where you will know someone and can process it together. Not everyone can go to these, and not everyone wants to. Our church is full of all different kinds of people, and I love that we make space for dialogue from where people are actually at—not where I think they should be. So here are a few opportunities in which I will be participating. You can add to the list if you want. I bring Jesus when I march and drum. I’m looking for partners when I do it. I’m happy to add what I’ve been given to this good mix of important issues that can help people come together.

Monday:

3pm March For Our Lives at City Hall (South side) walking South. Shane, Blew, and I have been involved in different levels of planning. The elders, children, and people with mobility issues will be at the front of this march to get issues of poor people & poverty in the front of conversations about policy.

6:30pm Repairers of the Breach Moral Revival at AFSC (1501 Cherry st). I respect the work of Rev Barber and the Moral Monday crew in North Carolina. Shane helped get this event going in Phila.

Tuesday:

2pm Black DNC Resistance March at Broad & Diamond, walking South to City Hall. I’ve marched with Phila Coalition for REAL Justice several times, and I find Black Lives Matter actions to be profound and full of righteous indignation and so much beauty and hope. 

I won’t be going to the South Phila Blue Line Up Rally For Peace #alllivesmatter in August, but that vibe will be around this week, too. All sorts of people will be out this week and during this overblown election season. I still think our vocation is embodying alternatives with Jesus, not jumping along party lines or bowing out of the discourse.