Tuesday, September 23, 2014


This is now my daughter Kacey's profile  picture that she displays on facebook.  She wrote it is not a good picture but it describes how she feels - "what the hell is happening?"

I look at that picture and remember her as a little girl trying to do the right thing. And it breaks my heart - all of it.

The Reynoldsburg Teachers are on strike and today is the third day. Teachers do not go on strike casually or easily.  There is a long process of failed negotiations that have led to where they are today.  And that is - picketing outside the schools, watching children they care about and teach go into schools with inadequate teachers and security,  and not getting a paycheck or medical benefits. 

Every time I am in a prayer group I find myself asking people to pray about this situation.  97 percent of the union voted to strike but that doesn't mean that this is easy.  These teachers love kids and want to teach and walking a picket line outside the schools is something they never imagined they would do. Emotions are high as they watch some refuse to join them and others cross the picket line.  I am sure when all of this is over, there will be hard feelings and a real need for reconciliation.

And so, I write this blog just to ask for prayers here.
  •  Prayers for those people - on both sides -  who will be sitting around a table trying to come to resolution - that they might come with wisdom and compassion and care for the students. 
  •  I pray for the students who are going into the schools today and this week - that they might be safe and be able to learn something.  Kacey is a special education teacher and I can only imagine the emotional disruption for her kids as they encounter new faces in the classroom. 
  • I pray for the students who are staying home that they might be safe and able to learn something.
  • I pray for the administration that is making decisions in the present and for the future.  May they have compassion and wisdom.
  •  I pray for the teachers who are walking the picket line this week - that they might be strong and compassionate.
The hardest part to these situations is how easy it is to fall into "us" vs. "them" thinking and behavior.  Always, my hope is that we can continue to see one another as sisters and brothers - not the enemy.  And know that working for justice is hard but it does not have to be hateful.

Prayers all around.

1 comment:

WayneG said...

Compassion requires unconditionality… and it will be in short supply unless both sides develop a win-win attitude. Maybe the religious leaders in the community can intervene to make that happen or, like you, get the public to see that picking one side or the other will only make matters worse.