Love your neighbor as yourself. Many of us struggle to know how to demonstrate this commandment in our lives. In a sermon a few months ago, Father Jacob talked about loving your neighbor as “desiring the good of the other and acting toward that end.” In thinking about this statement in the context of the recent discussions about affordable housing and economic disparity in Charlotte, it is very easy for us to desire the best for our neighbors who are struggling to find and pay for safe, secure housing while paying for all their other needs like food and medical care. But it is more difficult to know how we can actually act to help reduce the suffering of those around us.
Peter Kelly of Equitable Communities CLT joined us for formation, he gave us some options for how we can take action.
- Become more informed. equitablecommunitiesclt.org has a wealth of information about the issues in Charlotte. Sign up to receive email alerts whenever an important issue is being discussed at a public meeting or voted on by our elected officials.
- Become an advocate. Communicate your concerns and/or positions to our elected officials.
—Make calls, send emails, or meet with our elected officials. You can also attend City Council and County Commission meetings.
- As a faith community, we are called to respect the dignity of all human beings. Consider providing financial or volunteer support to agencies that are working to help make a difference in the lives of others.
- Talk with your friends, neighbors, and fellow parishioners about what you have learned and your concerns. Many people want to help but don’t always understand the causes of the problem or the complexity of the solution.
This crisis will take years to resolve. There will have to be a variety of actions to make an impact. Consider how you and the people of St. Peter’s can make a difference. We must be persistent advocates in holding our leaders accountable as well as looking for ways that we as a faith community can participate in the solution. Please join us at the next Social Justice meeting on November 6 to learn more or get involved.
Katherine Everett, Social Justice Ministry Team