Praying for Baltimore

28 Apr

Good Morning,

You have probably heard that there were riots in Baltimore last night and too many fires that lit up the night.  In the midst of the violence many Baltimore residents took to the streets to try to calm the city and area clergy walk with them.   This morning, in an interview with one of the pastors, he said that Crypt and Blood gang members walked and prayed with them as well.

Jesus’ concern for Jerusalem has been running through my head.  Jesus loved the city, as all Jews did, yet he saw the unwillingness to address real issues that face them. (Of course the writer of the gospel of Luke has experienced the siege and destruction of Jerusalem).  It is a recurring theme throughout history.  Our cities hold the diversity and injustice of who we are as God’s people in this world.  The richest have the select home near the harbor with a beautiful view and the poorest have broken concrete and decaying building as their only view.    In Luke 19, Jesus expresses his pain over his city.

41 As he came near and saw the city, he wept over it, 42 saying, “If you, even you, had only recognized on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes. 43 Indeed, the days will come upon you, when your enemies will set up ramparts around you and surround you, and hem you in on every side. 44 They will crush you to the ground, you and your children within you, and they will not leave within you one stone upon another; because you did not recognize the time of your visitation from God.”

Baltimore Riot

One of the effects of last night’s riot was that the Orioles baseball game was cancelled.  Many of you know that I love the Orioles, not just because they play great baseball, but because of their leadership.  John Angelos’ comments on the riots is not exception to the greatest of the Orioles organization.

Orioles executive vice president John Angelos:

We need to keep in mind people are suffering and dying around the U.S., and while we are thankful no one was injured at Camden Yards, there is a far bigger picture for poor Americans in Baltimore and everywhere who don’t have jobs and are losing economic civil and legal rights, and this makes inconvenience at a ballgame irrelevant in light of the needless suffering government is inflicting upon ordinary Americans.

So, I continue to pray for peace.  There seems to be a conversation emerging about the real issues of injustice and poverty and unemployment and racism.  There is so many levels of problems.  Freddie Gray’s death has sparked a terrible riot, I pray it can begin an important dialogue and change for Baltimore.  Mary

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