The past year has unveiled deep wounds and injustices in our world.
At the beginning of this COVID season, we saw the racism that fellow Asian people around the world experienced. I was fearful that I too would experience the same treatment just for being Asian.
We saw the BLM movement spread all over the world as the death of George Floyd shook us to our core. This also heightened the awareness of Aboriginal deaths in custody here in these lands now called Australia*. This deep pain and longing to be treated with dignity is something that First Nations peoples, Black people, and People of Colour have been voicing out for so long.
We saw the gap between rich and poor. The poor continue to struggle to address the challenges of this pandemic and to receive the resources that they need.
We saw the lack of creation care. We witnessed extreme bushfires, as well as noticing that our air was cleaner as flights around the world have been halted. The virus could also have also come from animals who have been mistreated.
We saw how disconnected we were from our local neighbourhoods, and our need to connect more deeply and closely with those around us.
All these injustices, disconnection, and brokenness were already here before COVID, but were we listening? I believe we have grown in awareness of them over 2020. But the challenge now is will we continue to listen? And not just listen, but will our actions and lives change as a result of this awareness?
I invite you to attend our first in person Surrender event for 2021, as we wrestle with some of these questions. Our theme is ‘Can you hear the heartbeat?’ This is an invitation to listen to the heartbeat of the Spirit through the voices of the poor and marginalised. Many of us wish to forget 2020, but please don’t forget the cries of the marginalised and creation.
Join fellow Jesus-followers for the Surrender Mini-Festival on Saturday 13th March at Mitcham Baptist Church.
Register and more info here: www.surrender.org.au/minifest
*A term coined by Brooke Prentis.
By Charlene Delos Santos
Surrender Co. Director and BUV Multicultural 2nd Gen Coordinator