After a divisive campaign and election cycle, many people in North Carolina continue to struggle with the outcome of the election. But this weekend, faith communities across the state will offer worship services focusing on the theme of “love one another.”
The North Carolina Council of Churches is behind the coordinated effort to encourage people to avoid actions and words of malice.
Jennifer Copeland, the council’s executive director, says the group’s message begins with understanding the deeper meaning of love.
“One of the ways we think we can do that is to remind people of the biblical imperative to love one another,” she explains. “Not in the cliche, romantic sense of love, but in the hard, tough, nitty-gritty every day of love is an act – it’s how we behave, it’s what we do.”
The council has purchased a full-page newspaper ad for Sunday in The News and Observer in Raleigh, listing more than 300 clergy members from across the state who have pledged to lead by example, to care for community members and work for justice.
Copeland says the ad has a broader goal.
“The whole point is to show the state of North Carolina, ‘Look, there are a lot of us out here who, as church leaders, understand the biblical imperative to love one another, and here are some of their names,'” she states.
While analysis of the election results is in progress, the Southern Poverty Law Center released a report this week detailing how school communities have been impacted.
In a survey of 10,000 educators, 90 percent report that the school climate has been negatively affected, and 80 percent report heightened anxiety of students.