I’ve been reticent to post anything about the events in St. Louis/Ferguson/across the country because although I recognize that the internet is one of the most powerful tools, I also believe that that power comes with both heavy responsibility and, at times, heavy cost–factors for which I am frankly unequipped. I dislike being the token St. Louisan in the room, expected to have a concrete opinion just because I live there ten months of the year.
But I thought I’d break my silence just a little bit to share these images. Back in December, I was running some errands on South Grand, where a number of protests (and unfortunately, riots) were staged. Many storefronts boarded up and hunkered down. In the aftermath of the chaos, the plywood screens were covered in images and words of hope, peace, and perhaps even the beginnings of reconciliation.
At the time I was reading a book by Aaron Kheriaty, who writes, “We are created in the image and likeness of God, and thus fundamentally good and endowed by God with an inherent dignity. At the same time, our nature is wounded, fallen through Original Sin, and thus inescapably flawed, inclined toward evil, and subject to illness and suffering… Indeed, we are able to find meaning, hope, and redemptive value even in the midst of suffering or illness”. So regardless of worldview/faith/belief system, I think there’s some wisdom–and hope–in that for everyone.
[For more pictures (before stores started taking the boards down), see this album from the South Grand neighborhood Facebook page]