From Pastor Jodi Rushing
Creston First United Methodist Church
I was saddened this week to hear and see the social media post of several Creston Community High School students. I’m sure many of you were saddened too. This incident brought our community to the news in the way we never wanted.
The online social media was not just a small matter. I don’t personally know who the boys were in the picture, and I don’t pretend to know their thoughts or intentions. I know wearing white hoods over their heads, waving a confederate flag, burning a cross and holding a gun incites fear in many. It had so many symbols of hatred, inequality and oppression that some people who saw it were angry and scared.
My hope is that these boys will understand the significance of what they have done, understand the ramifications of their actions and have the wisdom to make amends. There are consequences to all of our actions and I pray the consequences these teens face do not break their spirit and that they can be transformed by this incident and not be broken.
Hatred is not something we are born with. It is something that we learn. Our own actions speak loudly to children and teens and I hope as a church and community we can share love instead of hatred towards all those who are different than us.
I am asking all of you to pray with me for these students, their family and friends, our school system and community and our country and world that we might only share love with each other.