As many of you know, February is recognized as Black History Month throughout our Canadian provinces. From the Ontario government’s perspective, the primary goal is to “recognize the valuable contributions that Black Canadians have made to Ontario’s economic, social, political and cultural fabric” which adds to the rich history of our province and country. While some groups have used this platform to politicize race, or even elevate or lower certain groups, the primary goal is to help us learn about parts of our history that often didn’t make it into our curriculum or text books.
A question you may have, is why should we care about this as Christians? In our theme verse this year found in Ephesians 4:15-16, Paul writes: “Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.” The “instead” points back to prior verses where Paul desires that the church or “body of believers” strive for unity rather than division; stability rather than unpredictability, clarity rather than deceit.
In light of that, we feel a sense of duty to present the broader picture of the struggles and victories of our Black Canadian brothers and sisters. As fellow heirs of Christ and valuable members of the body of Christ, we desire to bring more prominence to parts that were hidden for many generations.
We also recognize that stories of pain also point us to God’s presence. While we dislike and don’t always understand the painful situations in our lives, they push us to grow and become more dependent on Him. In time, they serve a greater purpose of supporting others and pointing them to Jesus. Pastor Daniel Henderson put it this way: “God, in His goodness, will take your open wounds and make them a tender scab, which eventually, will enable you to help others.”
Similarly, many Black Canadian and Americans used some of the hardships they faced to produce a legacy that includes Spirituals, art, inventions, and other incredible contributions to society that reveal part of God’s redemptive plan. We are indebted to them for this and want to share this part of the story with our students and community.
We know that God will continue to use our own stories of pain and brokenness for His glory, as He makes us whole and desires to do the same for the world around us.
J-D Lussier, Principal