#29 Small Group Ministry Session on “White Rage” Written by Rev. Jude Geiger, MRE, First Unitarian,Brooklyn – Based on his sermon preached at First UU on 3/25/12 found here:
Welcome & Opening Chalice Lighting (Please read aloud) #429 In Singing the Living Tradition by William F. Schulz
Statement of Purpose: To nurture our spirits and deepen our friendships.
Brief Check-In: Share your name and something you have left behind to be here.
Reading: An Excerpt/Edit from the sermon, “White Rage.”
Religion can be of help here. We don’t need to feel like we have to go at it all alone. Likewise, when we’re successful, we don’t have to feel like it’s us against and over the world. Rage is rooted in this sense of separateness. We are left broken when we allow rage to uproot us from that web of life of which we are a crucial part. Feeling rage is not wrong. Allowing rage to indignantly convince us that we stand apart from that web, our family, is the source of crisis. When it rears its angry head, acknowledge it for what it is… and let it go. It’s not real – only our actions are real.
Sometimes that’s hard to believe. For me, that’s where faith comes in. There’s a certain point where we just need to tell the mind – the part of us that repeats the tired old story that we’re not loved, or that we don’t care, or that the world stands against us so we should stand against the world – tell that voice to settle down. Even if we can’t see the other side, we may need to find a sense of faith that allows us to believe that there can be another way. We may not be thinking logically, and then logic isn’t going to help all too much.
Discussion Questions: The sermon talks about the change in the quality of living of the average white American over the past 25 years. These economic shifts often confuse conversations about race dynamics, privilege and power. In our country, as financial situations worsen for the majority of Americans, we also see an increase in attempts to mitigate the rights of Women, LGBT and Immigrants. How do these seemingly unrelated issues connect for you? What emotional responses do you feel? Have you found yourself wrestling with anger, rage, or fear as these conversations and changes play out in our national discourse? Where do you find hope in the face of the struggle?
Closing: (please read aloud) #469 The Wisdom of Solomon 7 (In Singing the Living Tradition)