On Thursday, October 1, the Rev. Dr. Robert M. Franklin, Jr., addressed the Augsburg University community for The Bernhard Christensen Symposium. His topic: “Moral Leadership: Integrity, Courage, and Imagination.” As Dr. Franklin listened to insightful Auggie students’ inquiry and questions to his presentation, he lifted up the call for us all to “steward your moral authority.” In doing so, he quoted the recent departed civil rights activist and U.S. House of Congress Representative from Atlanta’s 5th district, John Lewis. Rep. Lewis wrote in his final words to the American public in the July 30th The New York Times Op Ed piece, “Together, you can redeem the soul of our nation.” Leaning into MLK’s words, Rep. Lewis went on to write, “Each of us has a moral obligation to stand up, speak up, and speak out.” Thank you, Rep. Lewis and Dr. Franklin, for reminding our Auggie community that our call to serve as neighbor to each other neighbor is a moral obligation. May we have the integrity, courage, and imagination to do serve.
Let us pray:
O God of righteousness, stir us to stand up, speak up, and speak out with moral courage. The very soul of our nation depends upon it. Too often we are witness to and, at times, part of the failure of leadership to address the four-fold pandemic of COVID-19, systemic racism, climate change, and economic injustice. Embolden us to:
seek forgiveness where we have failed;
re-orient ourselves to your ways of mercy and loving-kindness;
listen to the needs of others with humility;
heal the hurt within us and around us;
work alongside each other for shared liberation;
imagine new ways of living into reconciliation and peace;
and celebrate love’s truth and power alive in each other and in all creation.
This we pray in your holy name. Amen.
Rev. Justin Lind-Ayres