June 1, 2020
A message from Thomas Mengler, J.D., President; and the Rev. Timothy Eden, S.M., Ed.D., Rector and Vice President for Mission:
The video of George Floyd dying under the knee of a policeman is obscene. The image is obscene, the sound of the dying man struggling to speak is obscene, and the casual indifference of the policeman on Mr. Floyd’s neck is obscene. But what was perhaps most horrifying was the fact that this latest death of a black man was only the last of a long list of brutal deaths involving policemen and people of color. The legacy of slavery and racism continues to this very day, and we fool ourselves if we believe that we can stand off to the side and let others solve this problem. If we are American, this is our disease, and it must be with our minds and hearts and hands that we work for the cure. If we are Christians, this is our failure, and it is in the heart and teaching of Christ that we must find healing for this sin.
As a Catholic and Marianist university, St. Mary’s is a community in mission committed to educating men and women who promote the dignity of all human beings. In this sad time in our nation’s history, we stand with all of those who have been denied justice and their birthright of a safe and secure life.
As members of a community committed to healing the wounds of racism let us pray,
Christ, our brother and teacher, be with us in this dark time.
We bring before you all those who have suffered under the injustice of racism. Grant them peace and justice, and help us all to recreate the face of the earth in your Spirit.
We pray, too, for all those men and women who take on the responsibility of bringing peace and order to our streets. Give them a keen sense of both your justice and your mercy.
Bring us together, O Christ, into the Peace of our Father’s Kingdom.
We ask this as your brothers and sisters.