Editor’s Note: This post comes from Pastor Prayers, the blog of the Rev. Parisa Parsa, who describes herself as a mother and a minister serving a wonderful congregation in Milton, MA. Parisa writes:
This is the text I wrote as the basis for my homily at the UU Vespers service at Occupy Boston on October 16, 2011. I spoke without notes, so the homily delivered was ‘adapted.’
Isn’t it great to be here?
It is a thing of beauty to see people coming together across political persuasions and ages and ethnicity and just about everything else in order to say: we are all in the same boat.
In order to say: we are all in the same boat and we are not about to let it sink! It is ours to repair and restore together.
We are not going to wait, and we are not going to use the same crew that built the broken ship to repair it.
This is our work, this is our world. Let’s make it whole together.
This is a beautiful thing.
Its an act of faith to be living out here, or to come here and stand in solidarity.
It’s an act that is part of our faith, a faith that calls us to live the redemptive and the hard promise that we are all destined for the arms of a love that knows no limit.
We are all destined for that land.
“We are the 99%” is the slogan of this movement, and we are there with it.
But our faith calls us to know deep in our bones what it means to be 100%.
100% born from a thread of goodness and hope that is woven through 100% of beings on this planet.
100% capable of goodness.
100% able to see and cultivate that goodness in ourselves and each other.
100% the ones in whose hands this world rests.
100% infused with the power of divine love, forgiveness, grace.
We are powerful when we are in touch with our anger.
We are powerful when we call out injustice, and when we hold accountable those who have done wrong.
We are even more powerful when we do all of that and keep in our hearts and minds
The truth that even those whom we call out for their injustice are a part of us
And when we account for the fact that in smaller ways we too have been part of the system we want to transform.
100% of us are destined for the arms of a love that knows no limit.
100% of us were born and offered the breath of life from a source we cannot fully name.
100% of us are in this boat together.
100% of us hold the power to turn the ship around, to mend its leaks, and repair its sails to set it right again. We need all our stories, all our hearts, all our spirits, all our anger and frustration, all our hope and laughter to make it new.
Let us be together. 100%.
Watch Parisa’s Homily at Occupy Boston on October 16, 2011.
“…we are not going to use the same crew that built the broken ship to repair it.”…
“100% of us are in this boat together.
100% of us hold the power to turn the ship around, to mend its leaks, and repair its sails to set it right again.”
I’m not sure I see how all this fits together. I was initially concerned with Occupy’s lack of an agreed “to do” list but, after visiting the original site and thinking more about it, I think it is essential not to make that list. Those who made the problems are in the best position to know how to fix them quickly and efficiently and have the resources/power to do it — what Occupy can do best is force them to see the extent of the damage they have engineered, to rethink how they see the world and to reconsider how they need to behave in it. Every notion of restorative justice also demands that we hold them accountable by calling them to repent and finding a place for them at the table. We are going to have to use the same crew, perhaps with some new officers. Otherwise, the outcome will be no significant change or violence, imho.