We too are called to not allow ourselves to be ruled by fear and allow it to turn us into cruel people who think of our-selves first and only, and leave the less fortunate to fend for themselves. Pope Francis has said that mercy is the “best antidote” to fear! And in the same speech, he called for us to partner that mercy with courage. We need courage to do the right thing in the face of fear which causes communities to want to build walls instead of bridges and makes peoples choose open conflict rather than embrace the differences of others. In a very real way we are called to “walk towards our fears” and not run from them. Walking towards our fears takes courage. But, we must not forget that we do not walk that journey alone -- we walk with Christ! We are called to walk with our black and brown sisters and brothers and demand an end to the systemic racism that is woven through the very fabric of our country! We all must speak up and act to bring about an end to the systemic racism in our institutions both secular and sacred! For those of us who are white, we must sit in the discomfort of confronting our white privilege and how it is the very root of the systemic racism that pervades our institutions and our society and call it out for what it is and for what it has done to our sisters and brothers of color. Not until we have done this can we live the great command of Jesus, to love our neighbor as ourselves. What personal biases am I being called to walk towards or to sit with and name? Might I pray to draw courage in facing my own biases, with the Holy Spirit guiding me?