Letter from Merrimack Valley Clergy Against Racism & Antisemitism

As clergy of many faiths living and serving in the Merrimack Valley, we have witnessed and learned about a recent wave of activity by white supremacist groups in our valley and our Commonwealth.  This activity has been violent in some cases; in others, it was meant to intimidate some of us and our Jewish and Black siblings. These white supremacist groups may also be trying to recruit new people to worship at the altar of hate and delusion.

We stand against hate and we stand together, along with hundreds of members of our congregations. We are not going to stop worshipping each in our own way, celebrating  life and God with deep and abiding joy. We are also deepening our connections, mutual care and vigilance across our various congregations, faiths, ethnicities and geographical  boundaries. We pray that all confused and deluded souls will turn towards love, not hate.

We join with all people of good will and local law enforcement to state the obvious: Antisemitism and anti-Blackness have no place in our Valley and will not be tolerated. May we all be reminded to reach out to support one another in both prayerful and pragmatic ways. And may we continue to delight in one another, in our varied gifts and blessings, as we give thanks for life and give glory to God.

We invite you to add your name and ministry affiliation below:

Rev. Lee Bluemel, Minister, North Parish of North Andover, Unitarian Universalist

Rev. Dana Allen Walsh, Senior Pastor, South Church in Andover

Fr. Vart Gyozalyan, Pastor, The Armenian Apostolic Church at Hye Pointe, Haverhill, MA

Rev. Frank Clarkson, Pastor, UU Church of Haverhill

Rev. Kenneth M. Young, Pastor, Calvary Baptist Church, Haverhill, MA

Rev. John W. Delaney, Pastor, Sacred Hearts Parish, Bradford, MA

Cantor Vera Broekhuysen, Spiritual Leader, Temple Emanu-El of Haverhill

Sam Kim, Senior Pastor, Intercultural Mission Church, North Andover, MA

Rev. Joan MacPherson, Pastor, Main Street Congregational UCC, Amesbury, MA

The Rev. Sarah Máto, Rector, St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, North Andover, MA

Rabbi Howard Mandell, Congregation Beth Israel, Andover, MA

Rev. Milagro Grullón, Community Christian Fellowship-Lawrence, Lawrence, MA

Rabbi Robin Sparr, Spiritual Leader, Temple Emanuel of the Merrimack Valley

Cantor Idan Irelander, Temple Emanuel, Andover, MA

The Rev. Alice Mann, Haverhill, MA

The Rev. Joel Almono, Rector, Grace Episcopal Church, Lawrence, MA