Just adjusting this so i’d like to begin by offering this quote, and i would like to use this quote really as the basis for what i have to say and it’s from the poet audre lorde who’s was a poet, an activist, feminist and radical black queer leader, Who said, what are the words you do not yet have? What do you need to say? What are the tyrannies you swallow day by day and attempt to make your own until you will sit in and die of them still in silence, and where did it even what are the words you do not yet have. What do you need to say? What are the tyrannies you swallow day by day and attempt to make your own until you will sit in and die of them still in silence? Audre lorde equates silence with tyranny, and indeed, tyranny is all around us and silence perpetuates tyranny and silence is tyranny in the 80s during the um, the beginning and height of the hiv aids crisis played act up the aids coalition to unleash power really promulgated. This mantra this message this model, this prophetic utterance in the world of silence, equals death and it’s. Still true to this day, silence does equal death silence, ethos, tyranny, tyranny begets silence, tyranny is nurtured by silence.

Silence is tyranny. Today, i’m thinking about those who have had their voices shut, turned off silenced, muted by poverty, by racism, by militarism, sexism in church and society by those who have had their lights extinguished because of hate of all kinds and manifestations i’m, thinking, in particular, of the murder That took place last night in austin, texas of activist garrett and his uh black wife, who was present and saw him murdered in cold blood by a racist who drove into the crowd and unleashed eight shots.

Five into garrett and three, i believe at the general crowd. Then drove off immediately the street medics who, god blessed them for being present, began to administer first aid and whatever medical response they were able to provide to garrett to help with the hope to help to save his life and upon doing that, the street, the police, Who were present, the austin police department began to aggressively push away other activists and interfere in the act of healing that the street medics tried to administer. Garrett was eventually taken to the hospital and he was pronounced dead. The exact cause of death, obviously being uh created and through the fact that he was shot, but the exact cause of death i’m not totally sure. I believe it was a heart failure caused by uh trauma induced by the shot ones. Garrett’S wife is a black uh. A female identified person i am assuming and um is also a person with physical disabilities or physical differences and derrick was her primary caretaker.

Silence is tyranny. Silence equals death, silence, nurtures tyranny. These are the kinds of experiences that we have to speak up about, that we have to proclaim them as anti human. We have to speak up when black people are lynched in this society in this country. In this world we have to speak up when people are denied health care. We have to speak up when women are denied their proper place in church and society when trans folks are not allowed to be parents when they’re not allowed to transition to the gender that they are know themselves to be.

We must speak up not just with our voices, not just with our words. Those are important and those are powerful, but we also must speak up with our bodies. We must show up. We must intervene as the street medics did with garrett. We must administer all forms of aid that we can provide compassionate aid of emotional support, pastoral care, counseling just presence being available, offering a word of hope when it is asked for listening, offering a listening, ear or compassionate ear, just holding somebody just speaking a blessing, reminding Them that they are sacred, reminding them that our hope they are holy, they are beautiful that they are made in the image and likeness of the god who created the universe and therefore they are noble, nothing that anybody can say not even a police officer, a racist Colonial system can ever change the fact that you are made in the image and likeness of the god created the universe that gives you power.

That gives you the ability to speak up, to speak out, to show up to step up, to intervene, to disrupt, to dismantle, disarm and disband. This is revolutionary faith. This is the faith that will move us forward. This is the faith that will establish what martin luther king called the beloved community, where we don’t have to worry about racist, where we don’t have to worry about colonizers, but we don’t have to worry that lives will be sacrificed on the altar of war.

The altar of white supremacy: this is what it means to be human, that we dare to speak out against the tyrannies that deny our right to be human. That deny our right to be in oneness, with not only other human beings but non animals with all of creation to be part of the one verse the universe for the universal versification of this cosmos. I’D, like to end with a blessing that i composed last night. When i heard the news of garrett’s murder, may this benediction liberate your soul, give you peace of mind and remind you that rage is indeed a prophetic value. It is indeed necessary. It is indeed sacred and important rage on the benediction. I will not tell you to be calm. I will not tell you to be subtle, quiet. No. This is not the time. Instead, i invite you to rage on dear one touch the flames of indignation. Let yourself be set ablaze. The fire will burn away the grief.

The ashes will be the seeds of rebirth. After all, the bright golden phoenix is only found in the dark black ash of pain. God will not be ashamed of your anger, god can handle rage and fear. Grief is welcomed and, yes, tears are accepted. Your rage is sacred and true rage on dear one god, and i are here for you – it will not leave you till you are through amen, may it be so, and it is so every time you choose to tap into that sacred divine power of rage.

Keep on keeping on dear ones, you are doing better than you realize.