Jesus and the 4th of July

By: Autumn Elizabeth

This may be God’s country, but this is my country too, move over, Mr. Holiness and let the little people through. –  from”God’s Country” by Ani Difranco 

American independence day has always been a hard holiday for me. Don’t  get me wrong, I love fireworks and most days, I even love America, but when I go to church that raises the American flag, or see 4th of July services, I get a little worried.

I’ve read the bible a good bit and part of the reason I think Jesus is such a radical guy is because he puts the little people in front of government, so much so he was killed for it.

Yet, I see lots of people in America, and other parts of the world, trying to join Christianity and government. I see a lot of the debate about gay rights, reproductive rights, women’s rights from religious perspectives.  But how would Jesus feel about this?

I wonder if Jesus would be comfortable with his followers aligning themselves with any government or political movement. For me, I am a christian first and then an american, but this doesn’t mean i need to make america a christian nation. Quite the opposite actually. I am bound as a follower of Jesus to align myself with those the government has shoved aside, with the folks who are not rich, powerful or seen on T.V.

I had a friend recently post their 4th of July plans to take care of veterans, I and thought “YES”. If Jesus were an american celebrating 4th of July, I think he would be at a soup kitchen, or taking a bunch of orphans to a fireworks show.

My wish for this 4th of July is that more Christians work on creating a nation of Christians instead of a Christian nation.  I for one think Jesus would rather be the leader of a border-less group of people who love everyone, than president of the United States of America.

Doomsday for DOMA

As citizens of the United States, both Jenni and Autumn are very aware of the two major decision issued by the Supreme Court of the United States today. For those of you who are less familiar, it goes something like this… The Supreme Court of the United States ruled that the Federal Defense of Marriage Act, which defined marriage as between one man and one woman, was unconstitutional and therefore must be overturned. The Supreme Court of the United States also ruled on California’s Proposition 8, in short, that same-sex marriage is still legal in the state of California. Currently there 12 of the 50 states in the United States allow same-sex marriage. Many places of worship are now able to offer all the people of their congregation federal rights with their marriage blessings. 

We will be posting several different perspectives on these rulings (including yours if you want to submit)  in the coming days and weeks. We look forward to hearing from people world-wide on these historic decisions, but as always, hateful speech will not be tolerated, diversity of opinion, however, is always welcome.  Here to kick us off with his perspective on today’s events is Nate Litz, a good Jewish boy from Saint Louis, Missouri.

Today’s Supreme Court of the United States rulings on California’s Prop 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act are a true victory for not only LGBTQ rights but also basic Human rights.  I hope that these progressive rulings and the media coverage of them has brought to light the mistreatment of minority groups in America. Unfortunately, a good deal of this mistreatment has been under the disguise of religion. I think that using religion as a way to demonize any group of people is absurd.  I believe religion in its simplest form is about love and gratitude. It is about being thankful for the lives we live (where, how, with whom) and being thankful to the deity (whatever that may be) that provided life and love for us.  By discriminating against those with whom we disagree, we bastardize that love.  We as a culture, a society, and a world must ALL work together to better ourselves and the nations in which we live.  Congratulations to those who fought tooth and nail for this victory.  Today is a day to celebrate.