Letters

CRANSTON WEST PRAYER BANNER – a Christian Response


A Reminder To My Christian Brothers & Sisters: As a Rhode Island pastor I feel compelled to write something about the recent ruling on the prayer banner at Cranston West High School. More specifically I want to address those who are speaking hateful words, harassing Ms. Ahlquist and taking their anger to the public sphere.

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For now i’ll keep it to a brief reminder (there is much to write about).

Here it goes…
The Scriptures call us to love  as Christ loves. That includes our enemies (real or perceived). Love those who persecute us – or in this case, love those who express their constitutional right (I don’t believe this is worthy of even being called persecution for Christians). We (followers of Jesus) have an opportunity to engage the world around us with Jesus’ sacrificial, calvary-like love.

Sadly, there are some who have identified themselves as Christians who are behaving so frustratingly un-Christ-like by hurling insults and attacking Ms. Ahlquist. It deeply saddens me, and I believe it hurts the heart of God.

At a time like this we need to be reminded that when we try to impose our faith through government it NEVER looks like Christ. We cannot legislate prayer, belief, faith, or love… ever. It’s not how Jesus worked. Thus it should not be how we work. Feet washing, cheek turning, dying for His enemies, befriending the hurting… this is how God works.

Followers of Jesus, let us be the ones who reach out, love, and comfort Ms Ahlquist during these attacks – because that is what Jesus would do.

Lastly, as my brother Stephen posted –  “if Christians spent as much time with the poor as has been spent arguing over a prayer on a Cranston RI school wall then Jesus would be glorified.”

grace and peace to you,

Andrew Mook – Sanctuary Church