April 13, 2021
The Andover Newton community is deeply saddened and distressed to learn of the killing of Daunte Wright, an unarmed Black man, fourteen miles from last May’s killing of another unarmed Black man, George Floyd.
Following Easter, many Christian communities read together the story of Jesus appearing to grief-stricken travelers on the road to Emmaus. This story has been foundational for the Andover Newton Seminary community, and our weekly worship service bears its name: “Emmaus.”
The story holds the extremes of despair and hope, fear and love, uncertainty and certainty, hunger and fulfillment. We live with this story because the story lives in us. God appears among us, despite the alienation that sometimes characterizes the human condition.
Today, as we walk this road, we see the broken places. As Andover Newton strives to eradicate systemic racism in our community life, curriculum, governance, and other structures, we weep at the suffering of our siblings and despair that change hasn’t yet come.
We pray for Black lives and Black bodies. We pray for justice and equity. We hold fast to hope that Christ will be made known to us even – especially – when all seems hopeless.
Inspired by the Emmaus story that the Andover Newton community holds so closely to our hearts, we pray that amidst heartbreak, God’s presence will be made manifest in justice and hope.
May it be so.