|Marcus C. Pomeroy||[Welcome]
Looking Into The Face of God
Marcus C. Pomeroy, March 29, 1999 -- [The following is a speech given at the SPARC Rally in Harrisburg on March 23, 1999.] My faith experience tells me that God is in each one of us and that what we do to each other we do to God. Look around at one another's faces, gaze into one another's eyes for just a moment. Notice the person beside you, in front of you, behind you, the color of his or her skin, its softness and smoothness, or the etching that time and experience has left. Some of us are tall, some short, some young, some old, some male, some female. Some of us have dark hair, some gray, some no hair at all. What you are seeing is the face of God. This is what God looks like, us in all our wonderful, beautiful diversity. This is why all across the nation people just like us are joining together. Our faith compels us to stand with one another because we are all children of the same God. We are here today because we share a common root system that nourishes us with the passionate love of God. We are here to claim with our brother Martin Luther King, Jr. that where justice is denied to even one of us, justice is denied to all of us, until there is justice for all of us there is not justice for any of us.
A few weeks ago a member of our congregation told us that she and her partner have not even had the courtesy of a reply to their brief asking for an advisory opinion regarding their effort to be recognized as the legal parents of their two sons. The judge does not even respond to their communications or the communications of their attorney. They are rendered invisible, not even afforded the dignity of being recognized as worthy citizens of this Commonwealth. This young woman bore her sons in her own body, her partner shared with her every step of two carefully planned pregnancies, labor and delivery. Together, these two wonderful caring Moms, have built a home and tried to insure the safety well-being and future welfare of their boys, just as all loving parents would do. But the state of Pennsylvania and this judge refuse to recognize the validity and sanctity of their partnership, refuse, apparently, even to recognize their very personhood, let alone their legitimacy as a family. For that family, the law as it now stands means that should the major wage earner die, those two little boys would not receive most of the financial benefits to which children of heterosexual parents are entitled. I am here, you are here, and thousands of others all across America are joined with us because our faith claims that God demands justice for this family.
My faith tradition tells me that where there is love, joy, peace, patience, endurance, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control- there God is present. Look around you. Can you see it? God's face is not turned away from us. The voices of hatred, violence, religious intolerance, fear and socially sanctioned abuse have tried to drown out the beautiful melody of our chorus, but our voices grow stronger every day, and the power of our song of justice and equality will never be overcome. We shall overcome. Because it is God's song we sing, the song of creation itself, the song of equal partners in faith, of equal partners in God's love.
Marcus C. Pomeroy is the Pastor at Central Baptist Church of Wayne PA, Harrisburg