The Rev. Casey dunsworth

serves as Associate Campus Pastor to the Belfry, the Lutheran-Episcopal Campus Ministry to UC Davis

and as Program Director for LEVN, the Lutheran Episcopal Volunteer Network.


Every Thursday at 1:00, Elizabeth and I lead a contemplative prayer service. Nobody comes except for Elizabeth and me, because it's a bad time, but we didn't choose it. This is far from the point of this post. Because no one else comes, Elizabeth texted me last night, saying, "Hey, want to read each other quotations about non-violence tomorrow?" as a suggestion for this afternoon's theme. She's great.

I agreed to the theme of non-violence, and went right to a book I got from my mom, Make Gentle the Life of This World, a collection of the words of Bobby Kennedy. I was amazed at how what he said, which revolutionized America at the time he said it, is still completely applicable to state of this nation, today. What a genius.

The victims of violence are black and white, rich and poor, young and old, famous and unknown. They are, most important of all, human beings whom other human beings loved and needed. No one -- no matter where he lives or what he does -- can be certain who will suffer from some senseless act of bloodshed. And yet it goes on and on and on in this country of ours. Why? What has this violence ever accomplished? What has it ever created? No martyr's cause has ever been stilled by his assassin's bullet....The real threat of crime is what it does to ourselves and our communities. No nation hiding behind locked doors is free, for it is imprisoned by its own fear. No nation whose citizens fear to walk their own streets is healthy, for in isolation lies the poisoning of public participation....Thus, the fight against crime is in the last analysis the same as the fight for equal opportunity, or the battle against hunger and deprivation, or the struggle to prevent the pollution of our air and water. It is a fight to preserve the quality of community which is at the root of our greatness; a fight to preserve confidence in ourselves and our fellow citizens; a battle for the quality of our lives.
-- From a speech the day after the assassination of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Ninety percent of the major racketeers would be out of business by the end of this year if the ordinary citizen, the businessman, the union official, and the public authority stood up to be counted and refused to be corrupted....Therefore the time has come...when we must actively fight bigness and overconcentration, and seek instead to bring the engines of government, of technology, of the economy, fully under the control of our citizens, to recapture and reinforce the values of a more human time and place.
-- From a speech at the University of Georgia Law School, 1961

If we cannot feed the children of our nation, there is very little we will be able to succeed in doing to live up to the principles which our founders set out nearly two hundred years ago....So there is our problem. Among us are millions who wish to be part of this society -- to share its abundance, its opportunity, and its purposes. We can deny this wish or work to make it come true. If we choose denial then we choose spreading conflict, which will surely erode the well-being and liberty of every citizen and, in a profound way, diminish the idea of America. If we choose fulfillment it will take work, but we will choose to improve the well-being of al our people; choose to end fear and heal wounds; and we will choose peace -- the only peace that can last -- peace with justice.


Peace with justice. Still unrealized. We owe it to Bobby to choose peace.

"The Waves," Matthew and the Atlas