A US Holiday Remembering The End of Slavery

Slavery dominated US politics in the 19th century. In a subtle way, it also was present at the drafting of the US Constitution. After the armed forces defending slavery were defeated, slaves in Texas were informed by US troops that they had been freed. That was on a June 19. So, we have Juneteenth.

We have a holiday to remember the contributions and life of Martin Luther King, Jr. This seems to be a fitting additional day of remembrance.

Although our holiday to remember people who fought in our wars seems more like a day to have a cookout and officially start summer activities than a day of remembrance. Sometimes the meanings of holidays become lost.

The problem is—we are still fighting for equality and justice. Politics in the US is still dominated by vestiges of that long ago fight. We just can’t get along.

The early church faced those problems. It took the Apostle Paul going to the headquarters and facing down Peter and James to get equal standing for different races within the church.

If you read what Paul actually wrote rather than what some white man told you he wrote, you’ll see that his ekklesia (communities) were expected to mix genders, races, economic status, slave or free. It took overcoming some prejudices even in those times.

We still have a way to go. But we’re improving.

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