For all the hoopla and innuendo spouted about what kind of prayers that would be read during the Inauguration events for President Obama, I heard joy and beginnings in the Benediction offered by the The Rev. Joseph E. Lowery which included the following;
“And as we leave this mountain top, help us to hold on to the spirit of fellowship and the oneness of our family. Let us take that power back to our homes, our workplaces, our churches, our temples, our mosques, or wherever we seek your will.”
And ends so eloquently with;
“Lord, in the memory of all the saints who from their labors rest, and in the joy of a new beginning, we ask you to help us work for that day
when black will not be asked to get in back,
when brown can stick around ...
when yellow will be mellow ...
when the red man can get ahead, man; and
when white will embrace what is right.
That all those who do justice and love mercy say Amen.”
And on Bishop Robinson’s remarks about his thoughts concerning the Invocation given by Rev Rich Warren and reasons for his prayer of inclusion:
Why Robinson decided to not pray an explicitly Christian prayer.
"I went back and read the inaugural invocations and I was simply horrified about how aggressively Christian they were. All I could think of was, If I were a Jew, a Christian, a Hindu I would feel so excluded. I would be screaming at the TTV set - hey what about me!
The God of my understanding. It made me remember that there are as many understandings of God as there are people...No one faith has God in a box. Whatever God is he's more than any of us can articulate.
What I really wanted was a prayer that all people of faith could pray with me.
On Saddleback not allowing gays to be members (and taking that notice off their website):
I'd like to think it was because he had newly and freshly aware of how hurtful that is and how it doesn't reflect our reality of gay and lesbian people.
On those who say gays should try suppress their homosexual inclinations:
I've been the reparative therapy route.... My own experience is it doesn't work. ...it teaches gay and lesbian people to become so self loathing that they are willing to not act in a natural way,
It only underscores the way the church has gotten this wrong. God doesn't ever get it wrong but the church often does……..
I think even the likes of Rick Warren and his congregation will come to see that gay people are a gift from God to the world and to the church."