Bonnie’s story with Be the Bridge begins in the way we hear from many. A church that seemed at peace and flourishing, where members became at odds in the face of a polarizing election that brought racial tensions to the forefront. Opinions on social media became barbs thrown between members. A chasm was exposed that always existed, but now could not be denied. Rather than see members push one another away or push the issue under the rug, the church sought peace. Not a false peace defined by minimization and silencing of difference, but a peace that comes from listening, learning, understanding, and pursuing justice together.
By God’s providence, some members of the church were introduced to Be the Bridge at just the right time. What they saw in Be the Bridge was just what they were looking for. A way to get people talking, telling their stories, really hearing one another, but with a scriptural focus.
What started as one, small, co-ed group of individuals dedicated to the church and the work of reconciliation multiplied into a larger second group, and now a third round of working through the study is in progress. Be the Bridge has become such a part of the culture of the church that it is part of their core curriculum and reshaped the church’s mission statement.
Bonnie speaks of the experience and future of Be the Bridge in their area, “Our goal is to eventually open it up to people from area churches. The groups have both gone exceedingly well! Discussions are heartfelt and open and relationships are being formed. People from [my church] are finding mission in becoming the bridge in a way that other groups/studies we’ve had at [the church] have not provided.”
Have a story of how Be the Bridge has shaped your church? We want to hear it! Email Elizabeth at [email protected] so we can continue to encourage others with how God is reconciling believers.