A Response to Recent Violence:

Beloved Children of God,

Darkness will not win. Violence is not the answer. Love will win. Love will prevail. Light will always overcome darkness. 

I have found myself needing to hear these words and repeating them to myself over and over again the past few days.

Yet I am deeply hurt. My soul and inner being are sad. I am extremely angry. I cannot understand why and how these acts of extreme violence and hatred continue to happen and spread through our society like an invasive disease. 

We as human beings are all broken. We all make mistakes. We all are filled with darkness and light. I will be the first to admit that. Let us not forget that we are also made out of our Creator’s love. We are truly beloved Children of God, no matter what we do and how much our inner darkness overcomes our inner light, even when it spreads to those around us. 

During times like these, it is easy for us to feel like the darkness that surrounds us and infiltrates every aspect of our society cannot be stopped. That it will overcome any light and positive moment. But it will not. No act of violence can destroy the love and light that our Creator has for every person and all of our world. 

Every time these extreme acts of violence happen in our world, we all reach an impasse as individuals and as a society. Do we give up? OR do we continue to love? 

Do we give up because we do not see any real change happening? OR Do we find that inner strength to love even deeper and work even harder to create love-filled change in our community and world?

Today, tomorrow, and maybe for the rest of my life, I will be sad. I will be angry. I will never fully understand, but I will never stop loving. God willing, I will never stop praying. I will never stop meditating. I will never stop preaching the Gospel of peace and reconciliation. God willing, I will never let my inner darkness overcome my inner light. I will never stop reminding myself and others how loved and beloved we all are, and thus light will overcome darkness. God willing, these events will inspire me and all of us to continue down this hard and winding path of love and light. 

Do not be afraid. Do not stop believing. Do not stop loving. For our God is with us and will always love us.

Corey Dao-Forrester, Director of Outreach & Family Ministry

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