Dear Members of the Executive Committee, World Sikh Council – America Region;
We write to you as brothers, sisters, and siblings in faith, with a common vision of a world joined in peace. In light of that vision, we reach out with deep sorrow for the tragic loss of life and trauma your faith community suffered this past weekend in the violence in the Gurudwara in Oak Creek, Wisconsin.
As you may know, in July, 2008, a Unitarian Universalist Congregation in East Tennessee sustained a similar violent attack, resulting in loss of life, injuries, and widespread trauma. Of course, those in the church at the time were most directly affected. But, because the attack was motivated by hate for our religion—for who we were, and how we are in the world—the pain and fear of being targeted spread throughout our whole movement. At that time, as shock slowly turned into grief and then the first stirrings of resilience and healing, it was important to us to hear reminders that we were not alone, that we were surrounded by loving neighbors willing to stand up for tolerance, to reject violence, and to pledge solidarity throughout our recovery.
Nothing we say can take away the pain in your hearts. But in this time of sorrow, we are moved to see the outpouring of love and support throughout the country from people of all faiths, through vigils and affirmations of solidarity. Many Unitarian Universalist Congregations, we know, are reaching out to their neighboring Gurudwaras in this spirit. And we, the Board of Trustees of the Unitarian Universalist Association, are honored to add our voices to that rising chorus, to let you know that we as a people are with you–with trust that one day, all people the world over will know the reconciling spirit of peace, and will walk together in love.
If there was any way at all our people could be of help or support to yours at this time, or at any time, please let us know. We stand ready to serve.
The Members of the Unitarian Universalist Association Board of Trustees