Read Luke 24:1-12 and John 20:10-18
This year at Annual Conference we will celebrate the Native Americans among us on Thursday and engage in an Act of Repentance for how they and their ancestors have been treated on Friday.
We’re doing this Act of Repentance because the 2012 General Conference told us to. More importantly, we’re doing it because relationships have been broken and reconciliation and restoration start with repentance.
Will one Act of Repentance make up for more than 500 years of mistrust and abuse? Of course not, and there are key issues of justice that still need to be dealt with, but it is a start and you have to start someplace.
No one is foolish enough to believe that any Act of Repentance, by itself, is enough and few believe that complete restoration is even possible but, in the same way, no one believed Jesus when he said, “that the Son of Man must be handed over to sinners, and be crucified, and on the third day rise again.”
Until he did.
Our Creator is a God of creation and re-creation, renewal and restoration, death to self and new life in Christ. Indigenous, imported, or mixed, Our Creator is my Father and your Father, my God and your God.
Sometimes families fight. It’s sad when they do, but it happens. Sometimes family members abuse each other and do great harm physically and emotionally. Sometimes two brothers walk out together into the field and only one returns.
Just ask Abel.
Yet over us all is the Creator and re-Creator, the one who can heal and restore and raise from the dead, turning the condemning blood of Abel into the healing blood of Jesus Christ. That’s the blood that binds us together as we gather around our sacred family table and engage in the meal that makes us one.