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Moving Forward!

Moving Forward!

It’s not about moving on – there’s a difference!

I hope we never move on from May 24th. I do, however, hope and believe we can move forward from May 24th. There’s a difference.

Moving on is an attempt to leave behind, ignore, or forget the past. It’s an avoidance of our pain and loss. You know as well as I that is neither realistic nor life-giving. Moving on is an illusion that actually keeps us stuck in and defined by the past.

In some ways it’s easier to move on, to just give up and walk away, to live in the illusion. If we do that nothing will change for the victims of the shooting, Uvalde, or those who come after us. I don’t want us to do that. I want us to move forward as a city, a parish, and individually.

Moving forward means we refuse to stay stuck in the past. Though we have been shaped and affected by what happened on May 24, 2022, we do not have to be defined, identified, or limited by it.

If we want to come together as a community, offer healing, and make change we must do the difficult and painful work of moving forward. Moving forward acknowledges and remembers the past for the sake of the future. We carry the past forward. That’s why we “say their names,” reach out with compassion, and work for justice and change.

Moving forward is an act of faith, hope, and love. Faith, hope, and love, however, are only real when they are embodied and enacted. The key here is action, doing something, making change.

That was the theme that ran through everything The Children’s Bereavement Center and St. Philip’s did to mark two years since the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School. It was all about moving forward.

  • We rang the bells in remembrance of those we lost.
  • We released butterflies with hope in the resurrection and the transformation of our lives and city.
  • We walked the labyrinth as an act of healing and a reminder that we are on a path of new life.
  • At our evening worship we carried the past forward and each of us committed to do one thing for the healing, well-being, and future of Uvalde. See some of the commitments that were made in the word cloud below.

If you were not there on Friday, May 24th, please pray the liturgy from that evening, read the sermon, and commit to moving forward.

You have a part in this. We all do. As I said in my sermon on Sunday, it’s how we fill the empty space in the Holy Trinity and take our place in the life of God.

We move forward by doing one thing at time. And we all have one thing we can do to move forward. Let’s each do our thing.

Peace be with you,

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