Discernment vs. Neutrality
Originally posted on Facebook in response to the near-fatal shooting of Tony Tsang Chi-Kin, a student protestor in Form 5.
To any Hong Kong churches that are still refusing to take a public stance in order to remain neutral: now is the time to speak up. The Church is not called to neutrality, but to discernment. And in situations where abuse has occurred, proper discernment — i.e., naming the crimes of the perpetrators and standing on the side of the victims — is the prerequisite for genuine healing.
Conversely, silence perpetuates the wound, drives it deeper, buries it underground, and favours the oppressor. It is violence masquerading as peace. Silence is not neutrality, but complicity.
In Ephesians, Paul says that “His intent was that now, through the Church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms.” What is this wisdom? That Christ is Lord over all things — which in turn means that the rulers and authorities who deface his image by vandalizing human bodies must be called to account. Christ’s Lordship is not neutral.
Mary understood this well: “He has brought down rulers from their thrones, but has lifted up the humble. He has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty.” She was neither silent nor neutral, but instead proclaimed good news to the poor. Our churches must do the same.