Election 2016: A Word from the Covenant Network Board

The Covenant Network of Presbyterians is gravely concerned about the aftermath of this year’s election.

We are saddened by the tone and tenor of the campaign, and the ways it normalized, provoked and CovNet-cong-logounapologetically used blatant displays of racism, sexism, bigotry toward LGBTQ people, xenophobia, religious discrimination and language and actions designed to “other” some in society and to instill fear and discord.

We are particularly disheartened by the connection of some of these words and actions with those who identify as Christian, and with the apparent efficacy of such language and ideas in attracting the votes of Christians.

Our concern grows as now-elected officials contemplate appointments, policies and postures that can only cause further injury to vulnerable people and to our society. We fear for the impact on transgender people; religious minorities, especially those perceived to be Muslim or Jewish; immigrants; all who are poor or lack proper health care; people of color; same-sex couples and all lesbian, gay and bisexual people; women; the differently abled; and others.

We are convicted that we who are opposed to fear-based and hate-motivated policies, positions and behavior in church and society must redouble our efforts, not falling silent but rather recommitting to fighting all forms of discrimination, whether it be in our pews and pulpits or in the broader world in which the church is called to labor.

Therefore,

  • We renew our commitment to seeking the full inclusion of all people in the church’s life and leadership without regard to race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability or anything else unrelated to profession of faith.
  • We renew our commitment to working for a transformed society, beginning with strengthening the church’s witness to the rights and liberties of all people and to the necessity of policies that lift up those values. We challenge even our own congregations to examine their own complicity in injustice and to take affirmative steps to repent and be transformed.
  • We renew our commitment to stand in partnership with racial/ethnic caucuses, affinity groups and any and all congregations and individuals who want to work together to address matters of privilege, racism and white supremacy, and discrimination of all kinds, inside and outside of the church.
  • We call on all Presbyterians to join us in active engagement, in vocal critique, in local organizing, in faithful study, in personal self-examination and in constant prayer.  May God make our church—and our nation and its leaders—truly inclusive, and as generous and just as God’s grace.

The Board of Directors of the Covenant Network of Presbyterians

The Rev. Randy Bush, Co-Moderator
East Liberty Presbyterian Church
Pittsburgh, PAThe Rev. Marci Auld GlassCo-Moderator
Southminster Presbyterian Church
Boise, ID

The Rev. Deborah Block
Immanuel Presbyterian Church
Milwaukee, WI

Timothy Cahn
Seventh Avenue Presbyterian Church
San Francisco, CA

The Rev. Laura M. Cheifetz
Presbyterian Publishing Corporation
Louisville, KY

Sam Evans
Fourth Presbyterian Church
Chicago, IL

The Rev. Chad Andrew Herring
John Knox Presbyterian Kirk
Kansas City, MO

The Rev. Clifton Kirkpatrick
Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary
Louisville, KY

The Rev. Kenneth E. Kovacs
Catonsville Presbyterian Church
Catonsville, MD

The Rev. Joann Lee
Calvary Presbyterian Church
San Francisco, CA

The Rev. Kimberly Bracken Long
Columbia Theological Seminary
Decatur, GAThe Rev. Carol M. McDonald
Executive Emerita, Synod of Lincoln Trails Indianapolis, IN

The Rev. Baron Mullis
Morningside Presbyterian Church
Atlanta, GA

The Rev. Patti Snyder
University Presbyterian Church
Baton Rouge, LA

Susan Thornton
St. Mark Presbyterian Church
Newport Beach, CA

The Rev. Daniel Vigilante
Grace Trinity Community Church
Minneapolis, MN

James A. Wilson
Broad Street Presbyterian Church
Columbus, OH

The Rev. Frank Yamada
McCormick Theological Seminary
Chicago, IL

The Rev. Brian EllisonExecutive Director
Covenant Network of Presbyterians
Kansas City, MO

The Rev. Tricia Dykers KoenigNational Organizer
Covenant Network of Presbyterians
Cleveland Heights, OH

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We welcome your questions and comments.

To join us in our work, please email [email protected]

To offer a financial gift to make this work possible,
please visit www.covnetpres.org/donate.

Comments

  1. Ginny Browne says:

    Amen!!

  2. Fred Thomas Barner says:

    Thank you. Thank God for you!

  3. Fred Thomas Barner says:

    Perhaps the distorted election, rigged in Trumps favor, will not be entirely useless to God! Were it not for the electoral college, and Hillary were elected, we could easily dismissed the anger that got Trump elected. I think we’d be wise to find freedom from the distortion of the electoral college, but not without great concern over the possibility that cities could gain distorted influence in governing the nation which is more than cities. As it is, prejudice less disguised, more in the open, we can self examine, and resist better and mature. We are all in this together- this sin AND call to redemption, so help us God.

  4. The Electoral College with winner take all, further divides the nation. One commentator stated that without the college system the whole country would be dominated by the two coasts. With states displayed in solid blue or red that may appear to be the case. If the vote shares were displayed in red and blue pie charts, however, we would be depicted as much more “purple.” Reality is that even in those red states include a good many Democrats, and vice-versa. The solid red state of Montana, or Florida is not totally Republican. In many states the margin was razor thin. Pie charts would be a small step in narrowing the divide.
    The EC is here to stay, its in the Constitution. There is no way that Congress could agree on a constitutional amendment, much less get 38 states to agree. Not gonna happen. But, in the meantime the results of Presidential elections should be more realistically displayed. Pie Charts pulleeze.

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