Letter: Fire and brimstone have no place at reenactments

April 13, 2023

I can’t be the only one who is appalled by the speeches delivered by the Reverend who spoke twice at the Meriam’s Corner event in Concord. We come to Patriots Day reenactments to celebrate our countrymen who were called to fight injustice. If we wanted to go to church, we would. 

The Bill of Rights stipulates the separation of church and state – surely this celebration should not be marred by harmful rhetoric and Christian supremacy. Where is the patriotism in spouting fire and brimstone at a crowd who come from every walk of life to observe a singular moment in history? 

While this man delivered his virulent sermon, many people seemed embarrassed and flabbergasted. Others had their heads bowed in prayer as he called those who go against Jesus “demons.” 

America is great when a diversity of ideals and beliefs can exist simultaneously. I certainly did not expect to hear “we must stand against wokeness”  and “in the name of our lord Jesus Christ,” at an event celebrating a secular historical moment. Were the minutemen Christian? Almost certainly. Is that why they matter? Certainly not.

While there is a place for spirituality at private events, this instance went beyond general prayer into impassioned, singular fervor. Some at the event responded to my questions and said “we live in a Christian nation.” Do we? (The woman who said this had definitely gotten a haircut at least once; a no-no according to Leviticus. I guess we’re a Christian nation when it’s convenient.) 

Part of his speech suggested that we should get back to the Puritan ideals. Sir, do you remember Salem?

Let us enjoy our history in peace. (It would not do to forget that it’s not only Easter this weekend but also Passover and Ramadan. We live in 2023.)

Sarah Berman

Mallard Drive