Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Helping When Another's Religion is Under Attack

On Tuesdays I get to talk on WKYB, Danville's country station.  This was this week's topic.

Mr. Rogers famously said "When I was a boy and would see scary things on television, my mother would say 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.'"  Fred Rogers was a Presbyterian minister.  This attitude reflects both a Calvinist sense that there will always be sin in the world, tempered by a mainline faith's belief that the world is full of decent people who will come to provide aid.

I have been struck by the number of instances recently in which, in response to terrorist attacks on one faith, people of other faiths have been quick to help.  When the Jewish cemeteries in Missouri and Pennsylvania were vandalized, Muslims organized the relief effort. When a mosque was burned in Texas, people from all over, mostly Christians, quickly raised a million dollars to rebuild. In Cameroon, where a Muslim terrorist organization threatens not just vandalism but murder against any who do not practice their eccentric brand of Islam, Christians and Muslims take turns protecting one another's places of worship on their respective sabbath days.

The religious terrorists are few.  The religious helpers are many.  Look for the helpers.