One Humanity… Accountable Unto God
As fellow Americans and recipients of the blessings of freedom and democracy, we (The Pastoral Staff, Elders and Members of the Thirty First Street SDA Church) have become increasingly concerned over our nation’s slide into the dangerous, murky and turbulent waters of tribalism and the politics of fear. Many recent events across the vast and various parts of our great nation testify to the fact that America’s national principals such as the “Rule of Law” as opposed to the “Rule of Men” and “Inclusion” as opposed to ethnic, racial and religious based “Sectarianism” are in swift decline as they come under attack surprisingly by many who now hold public offices. These Individuals are the very same people, who swore required oaths to be the upholders and defenders of the Founding Fathers principles; principles that they now seem so eager to discard. Let’s be clear, our nation has (to be honest) often stumbled, staggered and committed great acts of violence in its slow and painful march towards achieving the lofty goals of its own inspiring rhetoric “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” and in addition “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America. If we, as a united nation, are committed to progressing forward, we can only do so by reasoning together in an open and honest way. All parties involved must understand that greatness never comes easy and that the greatest of all gifts is “Love.”
Many prominent national figures have recently come out, warning us against America’s current descent into bigotry that’s passed off as “Nationalism.” They've said things such as: “This is not who we as Americans and descent human beings are; we don’t separate children from their parents at the boarder.” We as Americans don’t give approving nods and winks to torch carrying Neo-Nazis and White Supremacists chanting in our streets “Jews will not replace us.” We don’t call African-American athletes seeking to raise the public’s awareness about the ongoing phenomena of unarmed black men being dis-proportionally shot (oftentimes fatally) under questionable circumstances across the nation by the police by simply taking a knee as S.O.B’s , Ignorant Blacks and Baboons. They say this is not who we as Americans and descent human beings really are in the year 2018. History, however, has more than proven man’s propensity towards distrusting, scapegoating and performing mass acts of systematic cruelty upon those in the weaker segments of our community.
Sadly this is who we really are, therefore it’s who we must decide not to be…first as individuals and secondly as a nation.
We’re seeking to create a positive internet presence that perhaps goes virial and encourages others of good faith around the country and even around the world to choose the greater purer path of love over hate. As others around the nation and the world join with us by creating similar pictures in front of their churches, temples or mosques and then posing them; our prayer is that those in positions of civic and spiritual leadership will realize that there is never any long term success or advantage that comes with the politics of fear, scapegoating and the doctrines of hate.
It’s time for sensible grown-ups to take the matches from the kids before they start a fire that burns America's house down. A house divided against itself can never be great and it will not stand.
As Americans, we can have spirited debates on the pros and cons of our various political positions without injecting the poisons of tribalism, racism, fear, hatred and scapegoating into our political process and dialog. We're inviting you as a recognized leader in the community to partner with us at San Diego 31st Street Seventh Day Adventist Church, 414 South 31st Street, San Diego, CA 92113 on the morning of Saturday 11/03/2018 @ 10:45 AM for a special open to the public service followed by a short ceremony on the steps of the church and then the staging of the picture. Lunch will be served at the church and we're tentatively considering an evening gospel concert to close out the day. Please respond and let us know if you can attend as we would look to acknowledge your presence and give you an opportunity to speak and say a few words to people of San Diego with regards to this matter. Until then in the words of Paul the Apostle: "If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men." Romans 12:18
We’re seeking to create a picture inspired by the iconic A Great Day in Harlem (above photo) A black-and-white photograph of 57 jazz musicians in Harlem, New York City. The picture was taken by freelance photographer Art Kane for Esquire magazine on August 12, 1958. The musicians gathered at 17 East 126th Street between Fifth and Madison Avenue. Esquire published the photo in its January 1959 issue.
The picture we are looking to take will be a color picture that shows various people of varying races and ethnicities (some perhaps in their ethnic dress) in front of the Thirty First Street SDA Church, which according to Isaiah 56:7 is to be called “A house of prayer for all nations.” A picture is said to be worth a thousand words; it’s our hope that this intended photo will convey to those who will see it, the words of the Apostle Paul found inACTS 17:26 “And He (God) has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth and has determined their pre-appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation.”
Our desire is that this intended photo will remind us all that God is not far from each of us, therefore we should treat each other with dignity and respect.