Öffne deinen Mund für den Stummen, für das Recht aller Schwachen
Sprüche 31,8

Speak out for those who cannot speak, for the rights of all the destitute.
Proverbs 31, 8

Dear congregation, dear friends,

A word of clear instruction from the wise teacher in the book of Proverbs – open your mouth, stand up for, be an advocate for those who have no recourse to justice because they are being held down, told to shut up, threatened and in fear of their lives – they have come to accept that their word will not be accepted, their perspective not seen, their rights not respected. An instruction that speaks directly into the many issues and stories that are presented to us in the news: the issue of racism and the violence black people face; the matter of dis- crimination against those that are different, that don’t fit into the “norms” our society has “accepted”. I could go on – but it would not make a difference in our hearts to rattle off the known facts that there are many people whose voices are not heard and whose lives are not respected. What would make a difference is when we would hear these words from the wise teacher and obey them in the way we live our lives with those around us and for those who work for us and with us. Only then will we begin to notice how big these problems still are, how deeply they still are embedded in our culture. We belong to the privileged and are often blind to the realities of racism, sexism, gender-based violence, and the poverty that is the result of centuries of exploitation and oppression. Before you start arguing, just listen to this watchword again and to the watchword of the year from Luke 6, 36: “Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful”. Let’s challenge each other to start with small steps of ‘Christopraxis’, of practicing what Christ practised – seeing the people around him in their needs, their pain, their fear, their hardships, their longings, their oppression by the political and religious system, and then doing something about it with and for them. And remember, that you are a saved and beloved child of God is also the result of Jesus’s Christopraxis – he saw you and was merciful to you too! Do we need any more motivation than this: that we get to be to others what Christ is to us – gracious, loving and merciful!?

Felix Meylahn