This 4th of July morning I noticed the following post on the Facebook page of one of our CSJP Associates in the UK:
"Happy 4th of July to all my friends over the pond - and this side too - enjoy the day!"
What a lovely message with which to begin the observation of this holiday. I am lucky that I get to spend the day with family and friends on a beautiful sunny and not too hot day.
I was a political science major and history minor in college, so I understand very well what we celebrate as a nation today, even if it has (d)evolved into eating picnic fare and watching things blow up in the sky. I love my country, and sometimes that love takes the forms of critique and dissent instead of flag waving. But that, in a sense, is what independence day is truly about, rather than being unpatriotic.
Personally on this day, I have started a tradition of praying in wonder and gratitude for our growing interdependence. Technology and globalization have their own challenges which should call forth critique and dissent from time to time, but which also bring us together in concrete ways unimaginable to the generations that set up (and violently defend/ed) borders between lands and peoples.
Utlimately, we are all beloved children of God, brothers and sisters and part of the wider web of creation. As we say in our CSJP Constitution: " We acknowledge our interdependence with one another and our reliance on the love and fidelity of God to lead us into the way of peace."
And so, how lovely that the first message I receive today is from a member of my religious community living, please note, in the country from which our forefolks declared independence, wishing all of us on both sides of the pond a happy 4th.
Blessings of Peace to you all!