Operation Family Meeting Sign-On Letter
Dear PKs, MKs, Ex-Youth Pastors & Worship Leaders, and all of you who still have an A.W.A.N.A. vest or who’ve spent their summers on a mission trip to Mexico,
We know this is bad. Each of us carries that nagging dread that things could get much worse. We try to vanquish it by registering to vote or donating to the #BLM movement. But the truth is the problem is much closer to home than we’d like to admit. It is us. Our people. Our parents, our siblings, and our old church communities that are supporting Trump and the propaganda of white supremacy under the guise of protecting Christian virtues. We want to believe that many of the values that we were raised with still matter. That honesty and kindness are still the hallmark of leadership and that we are called to look after the least among us. But the rise of Trump has caused painful divisions in our families and many of us have quietly distanced ourselves from the communities we came from out of hurt and embarrassment.
Here’s the thing though, no one else is coming to save them. No election commercial, Super PAC, or slick campaign tactic is going to change their mind. And our leaders in the church have chosen to lose their credibility over losing butts in seats. We are the only ones who can engage with our parents and Christian loved ones about their support for Donald Trump- support that elected him to the White House and continues to shape his political antics.
We need to engage with them over the hurt their allegiance to the President has caused us because we are the only ones they might listen to. Sure, they may scoff at our political opinions or raise weary tropes about the other party- but if we lead with vulnerability and show them how scared we are that their decisions might cost us the hope and future that they prayed so faithfully for us to have, they may hear us. If not, we will at least have opened a more candid relationship with our loved ones and begun to complicate the narrative of the white, evangelical Christian.
So, friends and former youth group buddies, we are asking you to make a commitment, within the boundaries that are safe for you, to speak with your parents, your close family, the church family you grew up with about their support of Donald Trump. We are asking if you will begin the conversation with them about how they are shaping the Christian faith to mean something you don’t recognize. This 2020 election will you face the fear and intimidation that comes with standing against what is now the President’s most ardent base of supporters- our Evangelical brothers and sisters.
We know it is scary. We are afraid too, but there is courage to be had in a community of those of us fighting to save our democracy and the values we were raised in. We can stand together, like Micah, seeking justice and loving mercy, while humbly walking back into the faith communities of our childhood and calling them to stand for what is right and true.