Our Response to the Breonna Taylor Verdict
In March of 2020, Breonna Shaquille Taylor was fatally shot by police in her home in Louisville, Kentucky. Breonna was innocent; Breonna was sleeping in her bed. The officers raided the house just after midnight under suspicion that there were drugs; they failed to find any of the evidence they believed implicated Breonna. For months we have mourned and prayed and demonstrated. We have spoken the name of Breonna Taylor in our prayers and cries to the Creator God of the Exodus, who frees captives and loves Justice. We have called out to Jesus Christ our liberator, who is high above every rule and authority. We’ve requested the help of our Advocate and strength in resistance to oppression, the Holy Spirit.
“Let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.” (Amos 5:24)
We’ve “mourn[ed] with those who mourn” (Romans 12:15), we’ve participated in a collective outcry of lament, prayer about, and protest against, everything the murder of Breonna Taylor represents, specifically the ongoing injustice that perpetuates harm and neglects the value of Black lives...especially those of Black women.
We've mourned that even some of our own brothers and sisters in the Christian faith refuse the gift of compassion, insisting that this is not an issue, or that it was the unfortunate consequence of Breonna’s wrong choices; wrong neighborhood, wrong previous boyfriend...as if these things justify the taking of Breonna’s life.
And after over six months of waiting there has now been one indictment. Of the three officers involved only one has faced charges, and the one charge is for “wanton endangerment” caused by the bullets that missed Breonna’s precious body and endangered the surrounding apartments!
In response to this situation On Ramps Covenant Church says; Enough is ENOUGH in Jesus’ name!
We plead that God’s people would arise and commit to God’s liberating intention for the world and for us “to do Justice, to love Mercy, and to walk humbly with God” (Micah 6:8). We pray that Christ “having disarmed the powers and authorities, [making] a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross” (Col. 2:16) would judge and overcome the “principalities and powers”(Eph. 6:12) of our society today: white supremacy, exploitative greed, colonialism, selfish individualism, and the love of violence. We pray that these idols to unrighteousness, in all their iterations, would be resisted zealously by all Christ’s disciples (James 4:7) and that God would make the church to be an example of righteous justice, that restores and makes things whole by the power of the Spirit. We pray that the unjust paths that led us to the unaccountable death of Breonna Taylor would be abandoned for God’s life-giving alternative - for forms of kinship and community that honor God by placing the love and care of our neighbors, and especially the most vulnerable (James 1:27), at the center of our lives and neighborhoods. Finally, we pray that God’s Spirit would be released so that the whole Church might finally see all people as equally made in God’s image.