Two retired Christian pastors set a powerful example to the Randolph County/Asheboro City communities on Sunday, June 14th at Eastside Park. Bishop Trogdon and Dr. Rogers, two well respected pastors in the Asheboro community, set a powerful example. Local pastors organized a Walk for Unity and called churches to come together to walk, pray, sing and read scripture. About fifty pastors and their laymen assembled in the parking lot of the Randolph County Courthouse. The large group walked down Salisbury street, turned left on Martin Luther King Jr. Dr. and gathered at Eastside Park. While walking people sang, “Jesus Loves the Little Children” and “Jesus Loves Me.” The group sang Amazing Grace together in unison when they arrived at the park, many with their hands lifted up to God.
The Love Chapter was read, 1 Corinthians 13:
The Way of Love
1 If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, that I may boast but have not love, I gain nothing.
4 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant 5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; and does not count up wrongdoing 6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. 7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
8 Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away. 11 When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways. 12 For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as have been fully known.
13 So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
John 17 was read; this is Jesus’ prayer for his people. Songs were sang together and then two retired ministers displayed what true leadership looks like: servanthood. They washed one another’s feet. The symbolic act of foot washing has deep meaning for Christians. At its’ root is Jesus’ demonstration in John chapter 13 when Jesus washes the feet of his disciples. After washing their feet Jesus said, “You call me Teacher and Lord, and you are right, for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you.”John 13:13-15 In Christian circles we call this “servant leadership.” This concept of serving one another comes from Jesus Himself.
Many were moved by the display of love and service to one another by these two men, a black man and a white man. When they finished Michael Trogdon, Bishop Trogdon’s son, who is also a local pastor challenged the group to reach across the lines of comfort and invite someone to lunch who is different from you and listen to their story, not to share opinions, but to just listen and make a new friend. Trogdon, a key leader and organizer of the walk, later posted on his Facebook page, “I wished that I could properly convey what my heart felt today! There was a sea of beautiful people walking together to pray for unity and healing in our nation and our communities! There were 50 pastors, Congressman Mark Walker, Mayor David Smith, Police Chief Lineberry and several police offiicers, Sheriff Greg Seabolt and several deputies, our Fire Chief, several City Council Members, several County Commissioners, a District Court Judge and so many others! Lord we praise You! Thank You for Your precious hand upon us today! Today was a beginning! STAY TUNED!”
People of Christian faith believe all human beings are created equal in the eyes of God and prejudice is sin. A little bit of healing happened in our community on Sunday night. Prayers for much more to come!