By the Rev. Dr. Jim Antal
Minister and President, Massachusetts Conference, United Church of Christ
Let me begin with a personal comment, commending those who have “occupied” over 25 cities throughout the country. Their peaceful, non-violent witness carries with it a kind of persuasiveness that has been missing from public discourse for decades.
Like many of the Conference staff, I have been asked if the Conference has a “position” on the “occupy …” movement. For 2,000 years, disciples of Christ have identified with the poor, oppressed, marginalized and disinherited. There can be no doubt that those witnessing through these many “occupations” are boldly lifting up those same values. Last night, many UCC members and clergy joined other people of faith at the Occupy Boston site – celebrating communion and otherwise expressing support. All of us in the UCC would do well to use this public witness as an opportunity to reflect on Jesus’ call to reduce inequality, mitigate greed, share all things in common and practice non-violence.
Editor's note: A number of Massachusetts Conference folks met at Occupy Boston on the evening of Wednesday, Oct. 12. Communion was served by
Jim Antal is a denominational leader, activist and public theologian. He led the 360 churches of the Massachusetts Conference United Church of Christ from 2006 to his retirement in 2018. An environmental activist from the first Earth Day in 1970, ...