These Voiceless Ones

JuliusDay 15 of our Lenten Journey through Dr. King’s “Beyond Vietnam” speech.

So they go, primarily women and children and the aged. They watch as we poison their water, as we kill a million acres of their crops. They must weep as the bulldozers roar through their areas preparing to destroy the precious trees. They wander into the hospitals with at least twenty casualties from American firepower for one Vietcong-inflicted injury. So far we may have killed a million of them, mostly children. They wander into the towns and see thousands of the children, homeless, without clothes, running in packs on the streets like animals. They see the children degraded by our soldiers as they beg for food. They see the children selling their sisters to our soldiers, soliciting for their mothers.

What do the peasants think as we ally ourselves with the landlords and as we refuse to put any action into our many words concerning land reform? What do they think as we test out our latest weapons on them, just as the Germans tested out new medicine and new tortures in the concentration camps of Europe? Where are the roots of the independent Vietnam we claim to be building? Is it among these voiceless ones?
A Lenten liturgy from Exodus 17:3-7 and John 4:5-42 from Atlanta-based UCC pastor Julius Jessup Peterson (photo above):

Call to Worship:

Leader: We are called in this time to remember and to anticipate.

People: We can’t see through the fog around us, we are without water, and the fruit of our land is filled with disease.

Leader: We are called to remember that salvation is liberation from the fear of death, and sin is separation from you.

People: Violence has divided us, neighbor against neighbor, loved one against kin, we have lost our way. Continue reading “These Voiceless Ones”