“It feels as if every corner of America is running on a steady diet of fear. We’re afraid of guns, of our guns being taken; we’re afraid of our enemies; of our cousins who cancelled out our votes; of brown bodies, black bodies, Muslim bodies; of police, of Democrats, of Republicans, of Christians, of non-Christians; of the fact that our Christian churches are dwindling; we are afraid of men, of women who will tell on men; we are afraid of the truth, of telling the truth, of un-truth and fake news; we are afraid of our constituency, of our leadership, of making a fool of ourselves … and what it all boils down to, it seems, is that we are most afraid of each other. Our work this summer at Holden Village is to call, equip and send people to live fearless lives of courage and faith in a terrified and anxious climate; unafraid to engage deeply, to ask hard questions, to undress our own privilege, to admit when we are wrong, to set down our defenses, and to love this world and all her creatures with their whole heart.”
We brought the American Stories exhibit to Holden and I served for two weeks on the teaching staff. During that time, we asked villagers to share a time when they found unexpected courage, and you can see the results below.
When people depart from Holden Village and go back down the mountain, they are told to go with good courage.