When I think of faith in action, I think of Dr. Martin Luther King, critic of injustice and inaction in the world around him. It was 50 years ago that he stood up for those who most needed help — the workers without a living wage, the families suffering from racism and poverty, the most vulnerable among us. This troubled him and compelled him to speak out for economic justice.
Fifty years after his death are we any closer to his dream of economic and racial justice? Or do we, like Dr. King, need to be troubled by the ever-widening gap between the rich and poor.
Dr. King calls us to fully engage with the injustices around us until, in the words of the Hebrew prophet Amos, we make “justice roll down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.”
Faith in action today could look like support for raising the minimum wage to a living wage so more families can climb out of poverty. It might mean speaking out against cruel and unjust legislation that calls for less investment in the growing number of children in poverty and homelessness. We can speak out against reductions in food stamps, or Medicaid or healthcare or funding for the public schools that the majority of children attend.
Dr. King was a critical thinker who modeled the ”revolution of values” that we need today. As a man of faith he didn’t mind making trouble for God. He believed his purpose in life was to bring justice to as many of God’s children as possible. His revolution of values would fulfill the mandate of the Gospel to look after those who most need God’s help.
Let’s be trouble makers like Dr. King, and let’s stand together with our brave trouble-making students who want a non-violent and just society.
Jill Sunday Bartoli