Father Steven Bell and Team Busted Halo discuss working towards healing and reconciliation after the news of Derek Chauvin being found guilty of murder and manslaughter in the death of George Floyd.
Father Steven reflects on how we, as Catholics, can move forward in pursuit of justice. “We don’t want to move forward in vindication or vengeance, but in a victorious notion of coming together for some understanding and greater respect.”
Brett shares his hopes for the aftermath of the trial. “I don’t think it’s my position to go through the merits of the trial. That has been done professionally by our American judicial system. I’m not here to argue the job that they did. What we need to do now is see how this moves our hearts to try to have this somehow bring peace instead of more hatred in such a split society. I really hope that this is a sign that things can get better.”
Father Steven responds, “We have to ask ourselves the question, ‘How will we be with one another?’ The result of this trial is yet another bit of evidence that we can be better. That we can actually come together in a notion of justice that’s going to bring forth healing if we do it right… The aftereffects of momentous occasions like this are often much more impactful than the event themselves. So, if we can get ahead of it by being more proactive and responsive than reactive and irresponsible… I’m one to believe that our disagreements and points of contention are opportunities. My faith has really helped me in this venture of giving me the tools to be able to sit in the midst of a lot of anxiety, confusion, and uncertainty.”
Christina shares her point of view. “I think part of the problem in our society these days is that most of us can’t handle disagreement. It can be so polarizing. I think what got us here in the first place was the lack of respect for the dignity of another human being, and it will continue to be this cyclical thing if we don’t stop hating each other or getting angry because someone thinks differently. When we forget the dignity of another person, even just in a conversation, that is where we are going wrong. And we see that here with this entire trial. It started with the disregard of another human person.”
Father Steven reflects on the things that keep people separated. “If we can’t get over the anger or fear that we have of one another, it’s because we have been holding onto the contempt that we have for one another. If we begin to let go of that contempt and drop that wall, we can begin to see our commonality rather than actively working through contempt to keep us separate from one another… I’m not looking for us to all be the same. That would be a horror story to come. There’s a difference between uniformity and unity. Unity really appreciates the diversity of people.”
Christina responds, “A lot of us might think, What’s it going to take for us all to come together and for there to be peace and healing? A lot of us will think it’s going to take a miracle. Maybe it will take a miracle, but miracles are possible and they happen every day. Father Steven, you work in reconciliation ministry, healing and bringing people back into right relationship with one another. I’m sure you have witnessed these miracles yourself and can speak to that.” Father Steven shares that he has witnessed many miracles of reconciliation and believes it is possible in our country.