Once upon a time a couple came in to see me for marriage counseling. I asked them, on a scale of 1 to 10, how good they thought their marriage was, 1 being terrible and 10 being wonderful. The husband responded ‘9’. The wife responded ‘3’. The husband was rather shocked. He said, “I think it’s all good. I have a good job and help on occasion with the children. I took you and the kids fishing on your birthday.” And on he went. I asked the wife why such a low number. She replied that their marriage was a disaster; that the guy’s heart wasn’t in it and they were drifting apart. The husband couldn’t see it.
The man in this story was operating out of left brain thinking: logic, some objective measurements and his own ego. The woman was working with right brain thinking. She just knew that everything was a mess. From her creative and more artistic side she could see that the “picture” was all wrong. He could argue but she understood the relationship.
The thing is this. There may be some objective successful measurements with our current leader but the picture is all wrong. The relationship between the leader and this nation is broken. Division is apparent to some, including this writer. I am sure the leader has some logical reasons for his comments, twitters and racist statements. His allies in the government stand by him and there are many people who like him and might give him a ‘9’. But those of us who understand relationships and right brain thinking know it’s all wrong no matter how strong the base support. Trust has been broken. The leader should be a healer but this leader brings sickness to the body of this nation. There is no character. Oh similar to the husband in my marriage-counseling illustration, our leader would probably give himself a 10. But some ‘right’ thinking people just know this ‘marriage’ can’t be saved.
Enough. Let me quote part of a statement from the leaders of the National Cathedral in Washington:
As leaders of faith who believe in the sacredness of every single human being, the time for silence is over. We must boldly stand witness against the bigotry, hatred, intolerance, and xenophobia that is hurled at us, especially when it comes from the highest offices of this nation. We must say that this will not be tolerated. To stay silent in the face of such rhetoric is for us to tacitly condone the violence of these words. We are compelled to take every opportunity to oppose the indecency and dehumanization that is racism, whether it comes to us through words or actions.
There is another moment in our history worth recalling. On January 21, 2017, Washington National Cathedral hosted an interfaith national prayer service, a sacred tradition to honor the peaceful transfer of political power. We prayed for the President and his young Administration to have “wisdom and grace in the exercise of their duties that they may serve all people of this nation, and promote the dignity and freedom of every person.”
That remains our prayer today for us all.
The Right Rev. Mariann Edgar Budde, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington
The Very Rev. Randolph Marshall Hollerith, Dean of Washington National Cathedral
The Rev. Canon Kelly Brown Douglas, Canon Theologian of Washington National Cathedral
I want to add my voice to these ministers. And while I do pray for our leaders I cannot follow them.