A Statement on National Strife

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The below is the full text of a message from Dr. Matt Thompson, KWU President, regarding the recent national strife, published at 3 p.m. June 1, 2020. 

Dear Kansas Wesleyan Community,

The last few days have been a dynamic and painful time throughout our nation after the death of George Floyd. There is so much hurt, fear and panic, along with a plethora of frustration and sadness. Like many, I’m not sure fully how to speak to this, but I know that we have a responsibility to engage. As you likely know, during the noon hour, we gathered as a campus community in prayer led by Scott Jagodzinske (campus minister), Pastor Nick Talbott (pastor of University United Methodist Church), Rev. Dee Williamston (Salina UMC District Superintendent and KWU Trustee), and Rev. Dr. Allen Smith (pastor of St. John’s Missionary Baptist Church and KWU student support advisor). Their words were challenging and inspiring.

Their messages remind me why I’m proud to be a part of the Kansas Wesleyan community. First of all, we are committed to the truth that all people have innate dignity, value, and worth. Second, all are welcome at KWU. More importantly, all also have voice and are encouraged to grow and blossom here. Third, while we are not perfect, we are committed to ongoing personal and community learning and maturation. 

For students, I want you to know if you have questions, concerns, struggles, and/or challenges, there is a faculty and staff here committed to you. Please let us know how we can help. Reach out to your faculty, your coach or activity leader, or to me. In addition, we will be reaching out to you this week. 

For faculty, staff, and friends of Kansas Wesleyan, please know that we stand with all who seek what is right, who seek to make sure that all humans are treated with dignity and fairness, and who seek healing through peace for our nation and our world.

I don’t have all of the answers, but here is what I know: we all matter, God loves us all, and KWU is committed to the safety, health, and well-being of all members of our community. We are called to action to make a difference, to stand up to intolerance and bigotry, and to love our brothers and sisters. I encourage you to do your part and to suggest how we as a community can make and sustain change. 

Please stay safe and well during this trying time. 

May God bless you and may God bless Kansas Wesleyan University.