Catholic Charities is committed to creating communications platforms that allow individuals who experience racism and other social injustices to have their voices heard. Today’s message comes from Vanessa Briseño, Senior Development Officer.
The world is shifting. It’s uprighting itself as it balances toward justice, equality and Love.
I have been lost in myriad emotions over the last several weeks, but two emotions are clear: I am disgusted by the continued disregard of life, specifically Black lives. And I am thrilled that this country — this world — is coming alive to stand up against the evils of white supremacy. Black Lives Matter.
Everyone’s experience is different. And my own experience as a woman of color in Portland has been fraught with fear, disappointment, sadness and shock. This beautiful city has a lot of work ahead of it to correct blatant violence and racism along with the micro-aggressions that are ever present in the lives of POC. We need to recognize and understand each other’s experiences and pains, and be dogged in our efforts to eliminate our own racial discomforts, biases and actions.
Our faith commands us to love our neighbor as we love ourselves. And to me, Love means listening.
Love means awareness.
Love means recognition.
Love means understanding.
Love means acceptance.
Love means LOVE.
And we must understand that Love starts within the walls of our own home. How we love one another is determined by how we experience love in our own families. As a mother, I am called to raise God’s child with love and to teach him how to love the world around him.
So let’s each one of us start at home.
Let’s teach Love.
Let’s inspire Love.
Let’s welcome Love.
Let’s also open ourselves to be taught HOW to love by our own children whose hearts and whose minds are incredibly powerful and instinctively prone to Love. And when hate becomes loud, let’s actively demonstrate that Love should be louder.
George Floyd. Breonna Taylor. Walter Scott. Eric Garner. Jordan Edwards. Michael Brown. Tamir Rice. Trayvon Martin. Just a few names from an exhaustive list of Black lives violently taken from a world void of Love.
Say their names. Then please be the Love you want to see in this world.