We the faculty of United Lutheran Seminary express our grief and anger over the epidemic of mass shootings in this country and the world. We write to take a stand on what we see as a theological dimension to this scourge upon our world. At the same time, we are mindful and respectful of the irreducible value of each human life lost, and we lament the unresolved tragedy that such evil lurks and manifests itself in human life.
White supremacy comes into focus as a dominant motive in many shootings. The voices, movements and organizations that perpetuate it must be opposed and countered. We join with conscientious people in condemning all forms of white supremacy. And we write as a theological faculty to confront and to denounce especially the use of biblical and Christian language, symbols and imagery to promote, aid, abet or rationalize white supremacy.
As we write, we are mindful of need to reform our own institution, practices and beliefs. In addition to individual repentance, the Christian networks in which we are a part must change. We confess that Christians have sometimes actively supported and sometimes tacitly condoned white supremacist words and deeds. We reject those words and deeds as blatantly incompatible with the good news of Jesus Christ. We believe that we must actively work to dismantle racism and other systemic injustices, and we have work to do in our own arenas.
We re-commit our faculty to accompaniment and advocacy among those who suffer targeting of hate, and to listening and to learning so that we might teach strongly against white supremacy, and on behalf of the authentic good news of a God who is Creator, Redeemer, and Sustainer of all life.