Like so many other concerned Americans, I am appalled by what happened at the Capitol Building on Jan. 6. Washington has been the site of many marches, protests and demonstrations. However, what occurred on the 6th was not a protest or demonstration, it was a planned insurrection. Five people died because of what happened and many more were injured.

Insurrections have taken place in many foreign lands. However, the United States is not some banana republic. We are a democratic nation, with a long tradition of peaceful government transitions. Many nations look up to the United States as one they want to emulate.

We are a nation greatly divided politically, racially and in many other ways. Our nation desperately needs leadership to bridge these divides. In my view, it is time our religious leaders stepped up to the plate. Our national church leaders need to prepare a joint statement strongly condemning the insurrection last week. At the same time,  they need to call for a day of prayer asking for God’s help in reuniting our nation. I feel this also should occur at the local level. We should never forget Jesus’ fundamental message – love.

Don Halstead, Woodstock