In this heated post-election climate, healthy dialogue is essential for reconciliation and healing. Yet helpful conversational models have been few and far-between, with social media rants, slanderous accusations, and harmful rioting leading the news feeds. Clearly, words are being spoken, but we are left to wonder the ongoing effects of reactive and defensive postures in our future as a country. These conversations are happening on national and international stages, for sure, but they are also taking place in local communities, in peer groups, and within our own families. To that end, establishing a sacred foundation for dialogue at all levels is of utmost importance.
The Friday of election week I had the opportunity to gather with our High School students and faculty in their weekly community meeting. During that time, we engaged The Rev. Eric Law’s Respectful Communication Guidelines (listed below) as a starting place for healthy dialogue. I invited students and faculty to consider how they were engaging the “other” they are in conversation with. And to prayerfully wonder how to respect the dignity of every human being in every encounter. Regardless of where we stand, reconciliation and healing is sorely needed for a peaceful transition of leadership in government, as well as moving forward within the spheres we walk in daily.
Please continue to keep our country, our leaders, our students, our families, and whoever the other is in your life, in your prayers.
The Rev. Brandon B. Peete, Director of Spiritual Life