Grounding our work in love and mercy

Photo: Dalyce Wilson for Bread for the World.

By Jennifer Gonzalez

On Sunday, “The Revival: Time for a Moral Revolution of Values,” a national tour co-lead by Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II, the architect of the Moral Monday Movement in North Carolina, came to Washington, D.C.

Barber, along with revival co-leader, Rev. Dr. James A. Forbes Jr., a champion of Bread’s work, wants to redefine morality in American politics to include love and mercy. They are asking faith leaders to join them in the endeavor.

Barber recently said, “Far too much of our national political discourse and activity has been poisoned by the dominance of regressive, immoral and hateful policies directed toward communities of color, the poor, the sick, our children, immigrants, women, voting rights, environment and religious minorities.”

He added: “Our country is in need of a revolution of moral values to champion the sacred values of love, justice and mercy in the public square.”

Forbes and Barber will be joined in some states by other national social justice leaders, including the Rev. Dr. Traci Blackmon, acting executive minister of the United Church of Christ’s Justice and Witness Ministries, and Sister Simone Campbell, executive director of the Catholic social justice lobby NETWORK in Washington, DC.

In each state, revival services will include testimony from people who have been impacted and hurt by regressive policies.

As I listened to the slate of speakers at the Pennsylvania Ave. Baptist Church on Sunday, my thoughts turned to the work we do at Bread to ensure an end to hunger by 2030. Our work too is grounded in love and mercy, and we are many times the voice that helps move along important legislation that can help those most in need.

Because of the 2016 election, Congress is expected not to be fully engaged with its usual work of legislating. But that doesn’t mean that Bread is taking time off.

In fact, we are deeply absorbed more than ever in our work to end hunger. Earlier this month, Bread launched its I Vote to End Hunger campaign, which is urging voters to elect a president and Congress who will put the United States and the world on track to end hunger by 2030.

If you are moved to elect leaders who will fight to end hunger at home and abroad, please sign our pledge.

Bread has also released a 2016 election platform, which is focused on steps leaders can take to end hunger. And soon Bread will release its Social Media Kit to help members elevate hunger and poverty as issues in both local and national races.

On Sunday, I also thought about my colleague Jose Garcia, director of church relations at Bread, who is lending both his voice and feet to El Camino del Inmigrante (The Path of the Immigrant).

Garcia, along with over 100 others, is walking 150 miles over 10 days (the journey ends tomorrow), starting from the U.S.-Mexico border to Los Angeles, Calif., to demonstrate Bread’s solidarity with immigrants without documentation, many of whom face hunger and other perils every day.

Immigration has become a hot topic this election season. But it’s not the only important one. There is still work to be done on criminal justice reform, child nutrition, and funding for global nutrition.

Let’s make sure we elect a Congress and a new president who will not only advance policies to help those most in need right now, but also sustain them for a lifetime. And let’s remember to always ground our work in love and mercy.

Jennifer Gonzalez is associate online editor at Bread for the World.

Related Resources