On Being Protested by Westboro Baptist Church
"Offense is easy. Anger is easy. The way of Christ’s love, grace, and forgiveness is hard. Following Christ means walking behind him on the via dolorosa—the “painful way”—that Christ walked to his crucifixion, where he showed the depths of God’s love by loving his enemies even as they cursed him. Let’s be agents of God’s fathomless mercy, peace, and love—even to our enemies. That’s how we will show WBC that we are truly followers of Jesus. Don’t be surprised if WBC returns your kindness with a curse, or chants one of their hateful songs in your face. But let them chant, let them sing their hate-filled choruses. Our songs of grace and love can drown out theirs because, as St. John Paul II once said, “we are an Easter people, and Alleluia is our song.”
"This will be hard work. But it will be good work."
The question is not whether we will be confronted by hate in our world, but how we will respond to it when confronted. What is our goal in responding? Does a reaction of offense and anger accomplish that goal? What kind of response allows us to reach our end? It may not be fair, but if all were fair, we would never have to confront hate in the first place.
Matthew Moser, Visiting Assistant Professor of Theology at Loyola University in Maryland, was protested by the Westboro Baptist Church. His response is an example for all of society today.
Christ & University l April 2, 2016