A Heritage of Hurt

Our reflections this month have centered around the theme of “the gift of heritage.” Our writers have shared with us a number of ways that they have opened themselves to their own individual and more collective experiences of heritage. They have invited us to do the same. In some respects, it’s like finding our way into personal and collective attics where boxes of memories await us to rediscover them. 

The memories we find boxed into our heritage are, for most of us, likely a mix of genuinely joyful and deeply painful ones. As we ponder them, we begin to see ourselves a little clearer–both the happy recipients of joyful memories as well as survivors of the pain and trauma held there. 

The month of October has brought into the world a war in Palestine and Israel that threatens not only individuals, families and communities there, but the balance of world peace. While the current war is newly started, the grievances are not new at all. It is a heritage of hurt that has surfaced again. In the face of that history of hurt, a hurt which continues to hurt, we might take notice. The heritage of hurting one another arises out of not loving, forgiving or daring enough. This is a good bridge over into the month of November as we consider the gift of generosity. Are we loving, forgiving and daring–enough? How we answer that question can help us understand the heritage behind us–and the one we are creating for the future. 

~Bob Patrick

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