Updated: Apr 1
March 26, 2021
Next Friday is Good Friday, so this will be my last reflection for Lent, and I want to reflect on a shameful phenomenon that occurred in the United States between 1877 and 1950, and how it continues today.
In those years, there were over 4,000 cases of lynching of African American men, women, and children in the United States. The lynching tree is the shame of our country, just as the Cross (the ultimate lynching tree) is the shame of our humanity. We may think that lynching is a thing of the past, but just as racism adapts itself to different times, lynching has been replaced by mass incarceration and the death penalty in America. Just as we are horrified by the Cross, so too should we be horrified by the unjust and disproportionate imposition of the death penalty on our BIPOC* sisters and brothers.
Dear God, just as your Son was cruelly and unjustly hung on a tree, so too are our BIPOC sisters and brothers condemned to prison and death unjustly. Help us to work to end the shame of mass incarceration and the death penalty. In your Son's name, we pray that we may begin to overcome white supremacy and how we mistreat your children of color. Help us to strengthen our relationship with your Son this Lent as we journey toward healing.
These reflections are meant to challenge us in our journey through Lent. Please feel free to share your thoughts and comments with us.
* Black, Indigenous, and People of Color