Piece. Peace.

[Cabrillo National Monument, San Diego, CA; 2015]

I used to think, if you want peace, work for justice. But during worship this past Sunday it came to me: If you want peace, work for peace. I saw the inter-relatedness of issues I’ve siloed I’m my heart. Affordable housing, climate change, immigration, income disparity, our criminal justice system; they’re all of a piece. Neighborhoods of that Beloved Community.

Fifty years ago* Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. understood this: When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered.” (Re that “triplets” metaphor: If you are suddenly curious, as I was, when Easter occurred in 1967, I will tell you. March 26th.)

Easter Week of 2017, it seems fitting to close with this: Peace is my parting gift to you, my own peace, such as the world cannot give. Set your troubled hearts at rest, and banish your fears. [John 14:27]

“Beyond Vietnam” speech,  April 4, 1967, at New York City’s Riverside Church

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  1. Dear Patricia,

    Well, hello, there, Patricia and a Happy Easter to you and to you and for you and for you and for very especially you, sister, for your so very dear husband, for your Loved One in the long term care facility, for your awesome children, for your precious grandchildren, for your so cool full of spirit siblings and all of the rest of your beloved family, for your so, so very blessedly pure in heart friendsfamiily at your Friends Meeting at Cambridge, for your yoga class friends, and, in fact, for each and every one of your absolutely fantastic friends, sisterfriend!!!! Wow, what a great gift and such a blessing with this very inspirational and uplifting blog post article here for our Happy Easter, Patricia!!!!! Wow!!!! Yay!!!!! Sister, I sent to you in the snail mail awhile back your Easter card. It should have arrived to you quite awhile back, my so, so very dearest and darling friend. Wow, Patricia, you receive such deeply profound discernment at Meeting as you have such insightful and keen discernment anyway, sisterfriend! Sister, As it is very applicable that if we want peace to work for justice that when we want peace to work for peace itself. Wow, Patricia, what great discernment here, my so, so very dear friend and sister!!!!! There is very much indeed a very deep inter-relatedness of all of the issues which beset us as a people and a common human family in our as our so very dear, late Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said is our “Beloved Community, ” sister! As a disabled, indigent lesbian black woman who has multiple disabilities like with physical disabilities and even other disabilities I so, so very much love and appreciate absolutely awesome people like YOU, my dear, dearest Patricia who have such lovingly caring and sensitively heartfelt concern and progressive activism for all of us as indigent folks like with the lack of affordable housing and income disparity along with all of our other issues as indigent persons, sisterfriend. I so, so very much love and appreciate YOU, Patricia, and all of you who work in such a very diligently conscientious manner on eradicating climate change, immigration rights, and on the criminal justice system. I am just very moved and touched in my very, very heart, and in my very, very heart, mind, soul, and spirit with your very great play on words with such greatly beautiful descriptive clarity as you very sagaciously share and declare here that with peace that “they’re all of a piece.” I for one as an indigent, disabled lesbian black woman who receives my low, fixed income with my disability benefits do not feel offended by you, my absolutely fantastic sister and friend Patricia, and by others who reach out to me and try to help and I don’t in the least think of you all as silly do-gooders or as those so-called “typical white liberals.” I for one as the indigent, disabled lesbian black woman who I am have such a deep love for YOU, Patricia, and for all of you and such a deep trust and I don’t feel like white people try to come in and take charge by taking over. I have such a great and cheerful attitude as a black person and black woman with my harsh circumstances and I want so and long for and yearn so that awesome white persons see me as a safe and open black person and black woman who is friendly and safe as well as not coming from a bitter and angry place. I am just so very full of such love for all of you and of such deep gratitude so appreciating each of you from the very deepest depths of my very heart from the very bottom of my heart!!!!! I think so, so very highly of you all as white persons and as my sisters and brothers loving each of you so as our Good God’s children in our Beloved Community as our human family with all of our other sisters and brothers of other races and ethnicities also. I so, so very much love very especially YOU, sister Patricia, and other so, so very right on, wondrously wonderful white women so loving and cherishing each of you and in thinking so highly of each of you as the good people you are with such a sweet heart and spirit being very loving, caring, friendly, and sweet to me and to others as very many of you as such precious white women are very good-hearted and good-natured!!!!!! Sisterfriend, YOU, Patricia, and other awesome white women are my very favorites among white people, and also you all as such super white women are my very favorites among all people in general!!!!!! And this is my very sacred promise to our Good God and to each and every one of you as so, so very dearly special white women!!!!!

    Sister, I thank-YOU for this beautiful quote which you have used here from our very astounding late Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. I remember that when I was in the second grade in Catholic school when I used to be Catholic in the 1969-1970 school year when I was seven-years-old that I read a children’s book about our Rev. Dr.Martin Luther King, Jr. I did a book report on the book! I made a promise to our Sweet Jesus that I wanted to be like our late great Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in so loving and reaching out to all of God”s people like in loving and reaching out to white persons and to all of our Sweet Spirit’s children. Wow, I remember that time very well and making my promise. I even renewed that sacred promise to our Good God when I was 24 in 1986 and just knowing and so wanting and longing for so yearning to be a minister someday, sister! Even though I’m not an official, ordained minister, sisterfriend, I try to minister to people in the very way I live my life and with being a prayer warrior praying without ceasing for YOU, sister, and for each and every one of you as our So So Very Loving Spirit’s children and my sisters and brothers!!!!! Patricia, I pray for and think of daily and very frequently YOU, my awesome sister, your so very dear husband, your Loved One in the long term care facility, for your great children, your precious grandchildren, for your wonderful siblings and all of the rest of your beloved family, for your superbly super and blessedly pure in heart friendsfamily at your Friends Meeting at Cambridge, for your yoga class friends, for all of your very endearing friends, and I pray for all people, too, sending to each and every one of you such great positive energy!!!!!! Wow, I so, so very much love and enjoy praying and it is my very joy, honor, blessing, and pleasure and just such great fun for me to pray as well. Sister, I thank-YOU so for letting us know when Easter was in 1967. I would’ve been curious about that and, in fact, I often google when holidays were in past years and google when holidays will be in future years. Sister,, the title of this absolutely outstanding and awe-inspiring blog post article here is just perfect, absolutely perfect here and very applicable to the great theme and topic of this very fine and excellent writing here! The picture which you have very graciously and generously featured and included with this very powerful article provides such a nice touch to your very engaging writing here. I first saw the three trees in the background and I thought of Jesus on Jesus’s cross with the two other people of their crosses and then I saw the other two trees in the foreground. I thought at first that you had selected the picture with the three trees that could symbolize the three crosses until I then saw the other two trees in the foreground. I thank-YOU as well, friend of mine, Patricia, for the marvelous link which you have very generously and graciously included with this very empowering blog post article here. Wow, sister Christian Quaker woman of mine Patricia you help me so with my very walk with Jesus!!!!! Wow!!!!! Yay!!!!!! As you have so loving closed with your very stupendous blog post article with this great quote from Scripture in John 14:27 I offer you my very heart and love to you, Patricia, and I say Peace To You, Sister, and Namaste!!!!!! Yay for YOU, Patricia!!!!! Yay for our very sisterhood and friendship, Patricia!!!!! Yay!!!!! Jesus so, so very much loves and cherishes YOU, sisterfriend, and so do I!!!!! Please may all of you and yours have a Happy Easter, and may YOU, Patricia, have such a wondrously wonderful Wednesday, rest of your week and weekend ahead, and may all of your very days be so, so very especially blessed!!!!! Yay yay yay yay!!!!!

    Very Warmly and Sincerely For Always, my awesomely precious and dearly special soul sisterfriend Christian Quaker white woman who you’re For Always so, so very much, with My and Jesus’s Peace and Love For You For Always, sister of mine, and with Such Blessings and Such Very More Blessings For You For Always, friend of mine,

    Yours For Always soul sisterfriend Christian black woman and For Always in the very great spirit of unity and solidarity, Sherry Gordon in Iowa City, Iowa

  2. When I heard another version of this message in Meeting for Worship, it raised up many of the thoughts I had been having during my own recent trip to the American southwest, where I began to get a taste of the relationship between militarism and (lack of) native rights and environmental protection in that region. I’m formulating a goal regarding educating myself about these issues–specifically Navajo/Dine uranium mining and how it is tied to militarism and resource–including water–exploitation. The landscapes of that region were beautiful, and yet I had the feeling that something very wrong was going on there. I think the issue of Native American rights is a growing concern for Quakers–I see it will be addressed in the FGC keynote, for example.

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