The following Joint statement of Brownsburg Congregations was released on May 15, 2020 by the clergy of Good Samaritan Episcopal Church, Messiah Evangelical Lutheran Church, and Calvary United Methodist Church in Brownsburg.

Dear Friends in Christ,

As you may be aware, three young people in Brownsburg posed this week in a photo containing a racial slur, which has been widely shared on local social media and in the local news. Their actions remind us of the brokenness, hurt, and threat that racism causes to all the people of our community. As followers of Jesus Christ, we are called to continually repent of all that separates us from each other and from God and to strive for justice and peace among all people.

As your clergy, we write to you, the people of our communities of faith, to express our lament that this incident has occurred, to express particular pastoral concern for the welfare of people in our community who feel unsafe, and to remind all of us of the unifying vision that Jesus Christ invites us into when he prayed that we “may all be one.” (John 17:21)

In order to be one in Christ, we must each do the hard work of confronting our own biases and privileges and prejudices, particularly those of us who have individually benefitted from systems designed to perpetuate racism and discrimination. We must speak up whenever we encounter language or behavior that in any way promotes division in our community. Whenever we fall short of Christ’s vision of unity, we must seek God’s forgiveness, and the forgiveness of each other, and then amend our ways to heal our brokenness.

We stand together today to ask for God’s forgiveness for our community. As your pastors, we are committed to helping us move forward in healing, learning, and working together for justice and equality for all. We urge you to have conversations with your families and friends about what it means to speak up for all of our neighbors. There are a variety of resources from each of our traditions that are helpful for us in taking next steps to help us do this:

We are also in conversation with partners at the Peace Learning Center at Eagle Creek about the possibility of offering an online workshop for our community in the near future; we will be back in touch with details as we have them. We are available and eager to speak with you at any time about this.

As we near the end of the Easter season, let us continue to work toward Jesus’ vision of a new community, filled with the signs of Resurrection: hope, peace, joy, love, and abundant life.

Yours in Christ,

The Rev. Erik Allen & Deacon Hope Moran, Messiah Evangelical Lutheran Church
The Revs. Cal & Yvonne Brandenburg, The Rev. Andrea Leininger, The Rev. Gray Lesesne, The Rev. Heidi Morris-Cass, Good Samaritan Episcopal Church
The Rev. Todd Outcalt & The Rev. Jennifer Evans, Calvary United Methodist Church


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