Shout from the Rooftops
BY ABBIE AMICO | June 22, 2020
Sunday’s Gospel reading is set in Matthew, Chapter 10, where Jesus gives instructions to the disciples who are sent forth to proclaim the good news. He states: take little with you, speak truth to power (and, when doing so, proclaim on the rooftops!), and allow others to take care of you along the journey. Each of these tasks asks for a vulnerability that is inherent to our humanity, but pushes against what our society deems as important. Instead of setting out alone, we are told to lean on each other. Instead of keeping quiet to preserve our privilege, we are told to proclaim loudly that injustice is taking place in and around us.
Today, to be sent forth to proclaim the Gospel message is to first ask ourselves “who in our global community is in pain?” The answer right now is communities of color in the U.S., who are grieving loved ones at a disproportionate rate due to both COVID-19 and police brutality. The pain and grief remind us that the systems that exist around us were never meant to benefit everyone, and that the social sin of racism points to a hierarchical structure in the U.S. that negates the Imago Dei, the image of God. To believe in the Imago Dei is to firmly shout from the rooftops that the humanity of the person standing next to us is as precious and sacred as our own. God lives within us, and God lives among those who we surround ourselves with. As part of the Imago Dei, we as a society cannot leave folks behind, as there is no such thing as a throw-away person. Our follow up question, then, must be, what do we proclaim as truth when we stand among strangers? Among friends and family? Are those answers the same?
Abbie Amico lives in the Boston area and works as a guidance and social/emotional counselor at Notre Dame Cristo Rey High School in Lawrence, Massachusetts. Prior to accepting this position she attended Saint Louis University, where she studied theology, and Boston College, where she received her master’s degree in theology and social work.
The reading today touched the heart of the gospel. The Lord says’:
Love one another as I have loved you. He did not say love those who look like you,talk like you! We are all one in the eyes of the Lord!
Speaking truth to power is a Gandhian way of proceeding. In his time Mahatma Gandhi used to say: “Recall the face of the poorest and weakest person you have seen, and ask yourself if this step you contemplate, is going to be of any use to her or to him.”
Thank you for your thoughts on “shouting from the rooftops.” It makes me think of the question of what is “just judgement.” To quote from your article “allow others to take care of you along the journey” I think of all the babies aborted who do not have that help, that care along their journey before their lives are brutally ended. I think of those “in power” to advise, mentor and teach those who are responsible for “unwanted” pregnancies to take into account first of all that the life that has begun in the womb is indeed made in the image and likeness of God. I think of the heavy and sad issues of “racism” and property destruction that are occurring in our country/world and the band-aid approach they are to the real problem of love of God and neighbor. My wish is for people to see the evil they operate under in the name of “racism”, abortion, etc. I would like to quote Archbishop Charles Chaput “Evil preaches tolerance until it is dominant, then it seeks to silence good.” Racial issues are dominant in our news while evil continues to lurk under the disguise of “tolerance.” We need to love all life and to search for and identify the root of evil. The “social sin” of racism also hits hard the babies in the womb who are not allowed to live. Thanks again for your article.
What a beautiful reminder. “The image of God” well written. Thank you. Blessings
Malcom X would not like todays society and would look upon it and be ashamed of this “tokenism” from false white people, harsh but true. This is what it is like false virtue signalling, false promises, false gestures and false white librels, those were the words from a true advocate for the Black people and someone that saw through the false agenda spread by white people who pretend to help the Black community…all words, violence, stealing Black voices and stages and it is still going on today and nothing will change until hypocrites that pretend to help step back and let the real people solve there own problems because the Black people I know are intelligent, smart, strong, friendly, independent and so much more so stop trying to help and suffocating there voices and stealing there chance to speak and yes this is too all the non Black voices even on here stop the tokenism. God Bless, covid affected all races so please respect other races I loss 3 employees from this virus 2 were white and 1 was Black, there are still many dark days ahead but light will eventually shine