Binding and Loosing

January 07, 2015

The Rev. Bryan Cones
St. Augustine's Episcopal Church, Wilmette
Pentecost 11 A, August 24, 2014
Matthew 16:  13-20 

I’ve been thinking a lot about binding and loosing this week

            as the events in Ferguson, Missouri have been unfolding.

So much of what is being said about it seems unhelpful,

            but when I mute all the commentary

I am struck by how much “binding” I see:

the police all strapped together,

            bulletproof vests and shields and helmets and armored cars,

and the protesters, some with their faces bound in masks,

some eventually bound in handcuffs

or restrained by the police.


Those visible “bonds” though are the sacraments

            of the real bindings that are holding Ferguson,

            holding all of us,

all that equipment is the visible sign that points to and enacts

            the distrust, the anger, the lack of opportunity,

            the racism and oppression,

all the diabolical forces that continue to hold our society bound

            in injustice, in violence, in sin, in death.

In my more pessimistic moments I fear that,

whatever happened between Michael Brown and Darren Wilson

            that resulted in Michael’s death,

those two men were already bound so tightly by these forces

            that what happened between them was almost inevitable,

with the consequences falling most heavily, fatally,

on a young man of color,

            as it so often does both there in Missouri and here in Chicago.

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