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A Time for Healing, Forgiveness and Unity


Our country has entered a phase in its reality with the recent election and its outcomes. Unfortunately there is still a major split in our country, our communities, our families and our marriages. Time has come to proclaim to one another: WE ARE ONE! We must put behind us the hurts, pain, disagreements and fighting and move forward as ONE to heal, grow and come together to fight COVID-19, racial and economic inequality and disparities in accessibility to fair housing, equal educational opportunities and the availability of basic needs of food, clothing and shelter. We must all join together to make this happen and for this reason, I invite you to send me any material which you believe will help people to learn steps they can take to begin the Healing Process we need so as to be ONE again.

Jim Messina
You can reach me at

Children Learn What They Live
If a child lives with criticism,
he learns to condemn.
If a child lives with hostility,
he learns to fight.
If a child lives with ridicule,
he learns to feel shy.
If a child lives with shame,
he learns to feel guilty.
If a child lives with tolerance,
he learns to be patient.
If a child lives with encouragement,
he learns confidence.
If a child lives with praise,
he learns to appreciate.
If a child lives with fairness,
he learns justice.
If a child lives with security,
he learns to have faith.
If a child lives with approval,
he learns to like himself.
If a child lives with acceptance and friendship,

he learns to find love in the world.

Note: What can we learn from this poem as we do the hard work of achieving: We are One?

What new behavior can we as citizens adopt in order to reduce our current environment of
a split nation, competition, vitriol and animosity?

In order to heal the tribalism, competition, dislike and even hatred in our county, each one of us could:
  • Listen to one another with respect, openness, and acceptance
  • Respond to one another with understanding, caring, and empathy
  • Let go of past hurts and pains
  • Develop trust in one another
  • Be open and vulnerable to growth and change
  • Forgive and forget
  • Be supportive of one another
  • Give and receive reinforcement, acknowledgement, and recognition
  • Use their sense of humor and laugh at each other's follies, idiosyncracies, and habits
  • Let go of anger, hostility, resentment, and aggression
  • Be assertive with one another
  • Develop emotional independence
  • Refrain from being dependent on one another for approval, a sense of identity, or meaning in their life
  • Share the power and control in our social dialogue
  • Problem solve conflicts creatively with a win-win resolution
  • Let go of the fantasies, which are barriers in split national relationship
  • Openly admit the barrier behaviors that causes problems in our societal relationship
  • Openly discuss the need for outside professional help; mutually seek such help
  • Recognize when changes are needed and take the steps to make such changes in our social relationships
  • Recognize when irrational thinking is blocking our society's relationship growth and healing and replace such thinking with a realistic perspective
Jim Messina
November 9, 2020
A Suggestion to follow in our pursuit of becoming: We are One!
Use the following words of Frederick S. Perls as you enter into or alter relationships with others to make them unconditionally accepting and loving.

I do my thing and you do your thing.

I am not in this world to live up to your expectations,

and you are not in this world to live up to mine.

You are you and I am I

and if by chance we find each other, it's beautiful.

Always pray to have Eyes
that see the Best in People,
A Mind that Forgets the Bad,
A Heart that Forgives the Worst,
And a Soul that radiates kindness.
What does Forgiving and Forgetting Look Like?
As we pursue this journey of healing with our fellow citizens have a look at what is entailed in the acts of forgiving and forgetting:

Forgiving is the highest form of human behavior that can be shown to another person. It is the opening up of yourself to that person to be vulnerable to being hurt or offended in the future, yet setting aside this in order to reopen and heal the channels of communication.

Forgetting is equally as high a human behavior; it is letting go of the need to seek revenge for past offenses.

Forgiving is the God-like gift of spiritually connecting with others, touching their hearts to calm the fear of rejection, quiet the sense of failure, and lighten the burden of guilt.

Forgetting is the God-like gift of spiritually touching others' hearts with the reassurance of a happy and full life with no fear of recrimination, remonstrants, or reminding of past offenses.

Forgiving is allowing another person to be human with faults, mistakes, or misdeeds.

Forgetting is putting these behind you; they are no longer brought up and no longer remain a barrier to your relationship.


Forgiving is letting another know that there is no grudge, hard feelings, or animosity for any wrongdoing.

Forgetting is the lack of further discussion, with no ongoing negative references to the event.


Forgiving is letting the other person know that you accept as genuine the remorse and sorrow for actions or words that hurt or disappointed you.

Forgetting is promising that this deed, whether of omission or commission, will not be brought up again.


Forgiving is accepting the sincerity of penance, sorrow, and regret expressed over a grievous personal offense; making it sufficient to clear the air.

Forgetting is your commitment to let go of anger, hurt, and pain over this offense.


Forgiving is giving a sign that a person's explanation or acceptance of blame for a destructive, hurtful, or painful act is fully accepted.

Forgetting is the development of a plan of action between the two of you to heal the scars resulting from the behavior.


Forgiving is the act of love between you and a person who has hurt you; the bandage that holds the wound together long enough to heal.

Forgetting is also an act of love, a form of rehabilitation therapy, helping the wounded return to a full, functional, living reality.


Forgiving is the act of letting go of temporary ill will, disappointment, or the disgust that arises from the break in your relationship.

Forgetting is bridging this gap in the relationship, eventually strengthening it against such a break in the future.


Forgiving is an act of compassion, humanity, and gentleness by which you let another know that they are indeed a child of the universe upon whom a variety of graces and blessings have been showered and that current or past offenses need not be a barrier preventing goodness and worth to shine through.

Forgetting is the act of encouragement, support, and reinforcement by which you assist the other person to rebuild, reconnect and re-establish a loving, caring, healthy relationship with you, others, and the world whereby gifts, talents, and skills are freely appreciated and shared.

Jim Messina
November 9, 2020

Take the Risk and Open Up To Help You and Others to become: We are One!

Once you have worked at forgiving and forgetting so that you can heal your relationships with others,  then you need to recognize that to increase in unconditional acceptance and love of self and others opens you and the others to be vulnerable, as John Wood so clearly points out in this poem. 


Taking a Risk

I will present you parts of myself slowly.

If you are patient and tender,

I will open drawers that mostly stay closed,

and bring out places and people and things, sounds and smells,

love and frustrations, hopes and sadness.

Bits and pieces of life that have been grabbed off in chunks

and found lying in my hands

they have eaten their way into my heart altogether,

you or I will never see them.They are me

If you regard them lightly, deny that they are important, or worse judge them.

I will quietly slowly  begin to wrap them up in small pieces of velvet,

like worn silver and gold jewelry,

tuck them away in a small wooden chest of drawers and close them away.

A Word from Richard Rohr

Love Your Enemies

You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor, and hate your enemy.’ But I say unto you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven. —Matthew 5:43–45

In the United States few public figures have spoken more plainly and powerfully about Jesus’ teaching to love our enemies than the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. This was not an abstract theological question for Dr. King. He wrestled practically and at great cost with how to love his enemies, both through prayer and through nonviolent direct action. This passage is an excerpt from King’s sermon “Loving Your Enemies.”

When I speak of love I am not speaking of some sentimental and weak response. I am speaking of that force which all of the great religions have seen as the supreme unifying principle of life. Love is somehow the key that unlocks the door which leads to ultimate reality. . .

Probably no admonition of Jesus has been more difficult to follow than the command to “love your enemies.” Some people have sincerely felt that its actual practice is not possible. It is easy, they say, to love those who love you, but how can one love those who openly and insidiously seek to defeat you? . . .

This command of Jesus challenges us with new urgency. Upheaval after upheaval has reminded us that modern humanity is traveling along a road called hate, in a journey that will bring us to destruction. . . . Far from being the pious injunction of a Utopian dreamer, the command to love one’s enemy is an absolute necessity for our survival. Love even for enemies is the key to the solution of the problems of our world. Jesus is not an impractical idealist: he is the practical realist.

I am certain that Jesus understood the difficulty inherent in the act of loving one’s enemy. He never joined the ranks of those who talk glibly about the easiness of the moral life. He realized that every genuine expression of love grows out of a consistent and total surrender to God. So when Jesus said “Love your enemy,” he was not unmindful of its stringent qualities. Yet he meant every word of it. Our responsibility as Christians is to discover the meaning of this command and seek passionately to live it out in our daily lives. . .

When Jesus bids us to love our enemies, he is speaking of neither eros [romantic love] nor philia [reciprocal love of friends]; he is speaking of agape, understanding and creative, redemptive goodwill for all people. Only by following this way and responding with this type of love are we able to be children of our Father who is in Heaven.

This is a timely reminder to Christians around the world. We must ask ourselves “What would it mean to seek to embody love as ‘creative, redemptive goodwill’ on behalf of all living things?”

Richard Rohr

November 9, 2020

Note: These wonderful words were sent to me for the We are One site from my friend Sharon Foote. Thanks Sharon.

Post Election Split in our Country Needs Healing
Youtube videos spelling out the split in our country and the efforts for reconciliation:

Relationships: Dos and Don'ts During Stressful Times Mar 25, 2020 at:

Dealing with post election stress? Mental Health Expert Offers Coping Tools Nov 16, 2020 at:
How can Americans heal a fiercely divisive election?

How the U.S. can heal after such a close election

Post Election Sermon Nov 8, 2020 at:
A message from the St Pauls Letter to Philemon calling for reconciliation and healing a message we need now at this point in our history..

How to recover from post election anxiety according to mental health experts Nov 4, 2020 at:

A question about how to resolve differences of morality in: Let's talk about the election isn't all about politics... Nov 5, 2020 at:

Let's Talk about Hamilton and why it resonates ... Nov 17, 2020 at:
On January 6, 2021, our democracy was challenged and our highest aspiration of becoming ONE again, united in peace and harmony was challenged. However, our Higher Angels prevailed and on January 20, 2021 a new president Joe Biden was innuagurated as our 46th President. On that date two significant messages were shared which fit the purpose of WE ARE ONE!

The first was the Innaugural Address of President Biden and the second was the Poem from Poet Laureat Amanda Gorman. To help solidify our message of WE ARE ONE we now present both of these documents here.

Inaugural Address

January 20, 2021

Joseph R Biden Jr


This is America’s day. This is democracy’s day. A day of history and hope of renewal and resolve through a crucible for the ages. America has been tested anew and America has risen to the challenge. Today we celebrate the triumph, not of a candidate, but of a cause, the cause of democracy. The people, the will of the people, has been heard and the will of the people has been heeded. We’ve learned again that democracy is precious. Democracy is fragile. And at this hour, my friends, democracy has prevailed.

So now on this hallowed ground where just a few days ago violence sought to shake the capital’s very foundation. We come together as one nation, under God, indivisible, to carry out the peaceful transfer of power as we have for more than two centuries. As we look ahead in our uniquely American way, restless, bold, optimistic, and set our sights on the nation we know we can be, and we must be. I thank my predecessors of both parties for their presence here today. I thank them from the bottom of my heart, and I know the resilience of our constitution and the strength, the strength of our nation, as does president Carter who I spoke with last night, who cannot be with us today, but whom we salute for his lifetime and service.

I’ve just taken a sacred oath each of those patriots have taken. The oath first sworn by George Washington. But the American story depends not in any one of us, not on some of us, but on all of us. On we the people who seek a more perfect union. This is a great nation. We are good people. And over the centuries through storm and strife, in peace and in war, we’ve come so far, but we still have far to go. We’ll press forward with speed and urgency for we have much to do in this winter of peril and significant possibilities. Much to repair, much to restore, much to heal, much to build and much to gain.

Few people in our nation’s history have been more challenged or found a time more challenging or difficult than the time we’re in now. Once in a century virus that silently stalks the country, has taken as many lives in one year as America lost in all of World War II. Millions of jobs have been lost. Hundreds of thousands of businesses closed. A cry for racial justice, some 400 years in the making, moves us. The dream of justice for all will be deferred no longer. A cry for survival comes from planet itself. A cry that can’t be any more desperate or any more clear, and now arise a political extremism, white supremacy, domestic terrorism that we must confront and we will defeat.

To overcome these challenges, to restore the soul and secure the future of America, requires so much more than words. It requires the most elusive of all things in a democracy; unity, unity. And another January on New Year’s Day in 1863, Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. When he put pen to paper, the president said and I quote, “If my name ever goes down into history, it will be for this act, and my whole soul is in it.” My whole soul was in it today on this January day, my whole soul is in this. Bringing America together, uniting our people, uniting our nation, and I ask every American to join me in this cause.

Uniting to fight the foes we face: anger, resentment and hatred, extremism, lawlessness, violence, disease, joblessness, and hopelessness. With unity we can do great things, important things. We can right wrongs. We can put people to work in good jobs. We can teach our children in safe schools. We can overcome the deadly virus. We can reward work and rebuild the middle class and make healthcare secure for all. We can deliver racial justice and we can make America once again, the leading force for good in the world. I know speaking of unity can sound to some like a foolish fantasy these days. I know the forces that divide us are deep and they are real. But I also know they are not new. Our history has been a constant struggle between the American ideal, that we all are created equal, and the harsh ugly reality that racism, nativism, fear, demonization have long torn us apart.

The battle is perennial and victory is never assured. Through Civil War, the Great Depression, World War, 9/11, through struggle, sacrifice and setbacks our better angels have always prevailed. In each of these moments, enough of us, enough of us have come together to carry all of us forward, and we can do that now. History, faith, and reason show the way, the way of unity. We can see each other, not as adversaries, but as neighbors. We can treat each other with dignity and respect. We can join forces, stop the shouting and lower the temperature, for without unity there is no peace, only bitterness and fury. No progress, only exhausting outrage. No nation, only a state of chaos.

This is our historic moment of crisis and challenge, and unity is the path forward. And we must meet this moment as the United States of America. If we do that, I guarantee you, we will not fail. We have never, ever, ever, ever failed in America when we’ve acted together. And so today, at this time in this place, let’s start afresh all of us. Let’s begin to listen to one another again, hear one another, see one another, show respect to one another. Politics doesn’t have to be a raging fire, destroying everything in its path. Every disagreement doesn’t have to be a cause for total war. And we must reject the culture in which facts themselves are manipulated and even manufactured.

My fellow Americans, we have to be different than this. America has to be better than this, and I believe America is so much better than this. Just look around. Here we stand in the shadow of the Capitol Dome as it was mentioned earlier, completed amid the Civil War when the Union itself was literally hanging in the balance. Yet we endured, we prevailed. Here we stand looking out on the great mall where Dr. King spoke of his dream. Here we stand where 108 years ago at another inaugural thousands of protesters tried to block brave women marching for the right to vote. And today we mark the swearing in of the first woman in American history, elected to national office, Vice President Kamala Harris. Don’t tell me things can’t change.

Here we stand across the Potomac from Arlington Cemetery, where heroes who gave the last full measure of devotion rest in eternal peace. And here we stand just days after a riotous mob thought they could use violence to silence the will of the people, to stop the work of our democracy, to drive us from this sacred ground. It did not happen. It will never happen. Not today, not tomorrow, not ever, not ever.

For all of those who supported our campaign, I’m humbled by the faith you’ve placed in us. To all those who did not support us, let me say this. Hear me out as we move forward. Take a measure of me and my heart. If you still disagree, so be it. That’s democracy. That’s America, the right to dissent peaceably within the guard rails of our Republic is perhaps this nation’s greatest strength. Yet hear me clearly, disagreement must not lead to disunion. And I pledge this to you, I will be a president for all Americans, all Americans. And I promise you, I will fight as hard for those who did not support me, as for those who did.

Many centuries ago, Saint Augustine, a Saint in my church wrote that a people was a multitude defined by the common objects of their love, defined by the common objects of their love. What are the common objects we as Americans love that define us as Americans? I think we know: opportunity security, liberty, dignity, respect, honor and yes, the truth. Recent weeks and months, I’ve taught us a painful lesson. There is truth, and there are lies. Lies toll for power and for profit, and each of us has a duty and a responsibility as citizens, as Americans, and especially as leaders, leaders who have pledged to honor our Constitution and protect our nation to defend the truth and defeat the lies.

Look, I understand that many of my fellow Americans view the future with fear and trepidation. I understand they worry about their jobs. I understand like my dad, they lay in bed at night, staring at the ceiling wondering, “Can I keep my healthcare? Can I pay my mortgage?” Thinking about their families, about what comes next. I promise you I get it. But the answer is not to turn inward, to retreat into competing factions, distrusting those who don’t look like you or worship the way you do, or don’t get their news from the same sources you do. We must end this uncivil war that pits red against blue, rural versus urban, conservative versus liberal. We can do this, if we open our souls, instead of hardening our hearts. If we show a little tolerance and humility, and if we’re willing to stand in the other person’s shoes, as my mom would say, just for a moment, stand in their shoes.

Because here’s the thing about life. There’s no accounting for what fate will deal you. Some days when you need a hand, there are other days when we’re called to lend a hand. That’s how it has to be, it’s what we do for one another. And if we are this way, our country will be stronger, more prosperous, more ready for the future, and we can still disagree. My fellow Americans in the work ahead of us we’re going to need each other. We need all our strength to persevere through this dark winter. We’re entering what may be the toughest and deadliest period of the virus. We must set aside politics and finally face this pandemic as one nation, one nation. And I promise you this, as the Bible says, “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.” We will get through this together, together.

Look, folks, all my colleagues I serve with in the House and the Senate up here, we all understand the world is watching, watching all of us today. So here’s my message to those beyond our borders, America has been tested and we’ve come out stronger for it. We will repair our alliances and engage with the rural once again, not to meet yesterday’s challenges, but today’s and tomorrow’s challenges. And we’ll lead not merely by the example of our power, but by the power of our example.

It will be a strong and trusted partner for peace, progress, and security. Look, you all know we’ve been through so much in this nation. And my first act as president, I’d like to ask you to join me in a moment of silent prayer to remember all those who we lost this past year to the pandemic, those 400,000 fellow Americans: moms, dads, husbands, wives, sons, daughters, friends, neighbors, and coworkers. We’ll honor them by becoming the people and the nation we know we can and should be. So I ask you, let’s say a silent prayer for those who’ve lost their lives and those left behind and for our country.

Amen. Folks, this is a time of testing. We face an attack on our democracy and untruth. A raging virus, growing inequity, the sting of systemic racism, a climate in crisis, America’s role in the world. Any one of these would be enough to challenge us in profound ways. But the fact is we face them all at once, presenting this nation with one of the gravest responsibilities we’ve had. Now, we’re going to be tested. Are we going to step up, all of us? It’s time for boldness, for there’s so much to do. And this is certain, I promise you, we will be judged you and I, by how we resolve these cascading crises of our era. We will rise to the occasion is the question. Will we master this rare and difficult hour? When we meet our obligations and pass along a new and better world to our children, I believe we must. I’m sure you do as well. I believe we will.

And when we do, we’ll write the next great chapter in the history of the United States of America, the American story. A story that might sound something like a song that means a lot to me. It’s called American Anthem. There’s one verse that stands out, at least for me. And it goes like this, “The work and prayers of century have brought us to this day. What shall be our legacy? What will our children say? Let me know in my heart, when my days are through America, America, I gave my best to you.” Let’s add, let’s us add our own work and prayers to the unfolding story of our great nation. If we do this, then when our days are through, our children and our children’s children will say of us, “They gave their best. They did their duty. They healed a broken land.”

My fellow Americans, I close today where I began, with the sacred oath. Before God and all of you, I give you my word. I will always level with you. I will defend the Constitution. I’ll defend our democracy. I’ll defend America and will give all, all of you keep everything I do in your service. Thinking not of power, but of possibilities. Not of personal interest, but the public good and together we shall write an American story of hope, not fear, of unity not division, of light not darkness. A story of decency and dignity, love and healing, greatness and goodness. May this be the story that guides us, the story that inspires us and the story that tells ages yet to come, that we answer the call of history. We met the moment. Democracy and hope, truth and justice did not die on our watch, but thrived. That America secured liberty at home and stood once again as a beacon to the world. That is what we owe our forebearers, one another and generation to follow.

So with purpose and resolve, we turn to those task of our time, sustained by faith, driven by conviction, devoted to one another and the country we love with all our hearts. May God bless America and may God protect our troops. Thank you, America.

The Hill We Climb

Amanda Gorman

January 20, 2021


When day comes, we ask ourselves, where can we find light in this never-ending shade?

The loss we carry. A sea we must wade.

We braved the belly of the beast.

We’ve learned that quiet isn’t always peace, and the norms and notions of what “just” is, isn’t always justice.

And yet the dawn is ours before we knew it.

Somehow we do it.

Somehow we weathered and witnessed a nation that isn’t broken, but simply unfinished.

We, the successors of a country and a time where a skinny Black girl descended from slaves and raised by a single mother can dream of becoming president, only to find herself reciting for one.

And, yes, we are far from polished, far from pristine, but that doesn’t mean we are striving to form a union that is perfect.

We are striving to forge our union with purpose.

To compose a country committed to all cultures, colors, characters and conditions of man.

And so we lift our gaze, not to what stands between us, but what stands before us.

We close the divide because we know to put our future first, we must first put our differences aside.

We lay down our arms so we can reach out our arms to one another.

We seek harm to none and harmony for all.

Let the globe, if nothing else, say this is true.

That even as we grieved, we grew.

That even as we hurt, we hoped.

That even as we tired, we tried.

That we’ll forever be tied together, victorious.

Not because we will never again know defeat, but because we will never again sow division.

Scripture tells us to envision that everyone shall sit under their own vine and fig tree, and no one shall make them afraid.

If we’re to live up to our own time, then victory won’t lie in the blade, but in all the bridges we’ve made.

That is the promise to glade, the hill we climb, if only we dare.

It’s because being American is more than a pride we inherit.

It’s the past we step into and how we repair it.

We’ve seen a force that would shatter our nation, rather than share it.

Would destroy our country if it meant delaying democracy.

And this effort very nearly succeeded.

But while democracy can be periodically delayed, it can never be permanently defeated.

In this truth, in this faith we trust, for while we have our eyes on the future, history has its eyes on us.

This is the era of just redemption.

We feared at its inception.

We did not feel prepared to be the heirs of such a terrifying hour.

But within it we found the power to author a new chapter, to offer hope and laughter to ourselves.

So, while once we asked, how could we possibly prevail over catastrophe, now we assert, how could catastrophe possibly prevail over us?

We will not march back to what was but move to what shall be: a country that is bruised but whole, benevolent but bold, fierce and free.

We will not be turned around or interrupted by intimidation because we know our inaction and inertia will be the inheritance of the next generation, become the future.

Our blunders become their burdens.

But one thing is certain.

If we merge mercy with might, and might with right, then love becomes our legacy and change our children’s birthright.

So let us leave behind a country better than the one we were left.

Every breath from my bronze-pounded chest, we will raise this wounded world into a wondrous one.

We will rise from the golden hills of the West.

We will rise from the windswept Northeast where our forefathers first realized revolution.

We will rise from the lake-rimmed cities of the Midwestern states.

We will rise from the sun-baked South.

We will rebuild, reconcile, and recover.

And every known nook of our nation and every corner called our country, our people diverse and beautiful, will emerge battered and beautiful.

When day comes, we step out of the shade of flame and unafraid.

The new dawn balloons as we free it.

For there is always light, if only we’re brave enough to see it.

If only we’re brave enough to be it.