Bikers Are Cool!

Wednesday, September 3

Photo by Art Smith

Photo by Art Smith

By Art Smith, Council of Twelve Apostles

Hear, O my people of the church, I am Jesus Christ of whom you have sung and testified and in whose name you pray. I am the spirit of love and peace which is in the world and yet not known by the world.

—Doctrine and Covenants 157:11

An unexpected ministry has ridden into town in Santiago, Chile. Not long ago, during a trip to Santiago, Gustavo, our church planter there, was selling his motorcycle to raise a little extra cash while citing the dangers inherent in riding.

Of course, now he’s riding again.

Society’s judgment plagues bikers in many places. But when that first biker showed up, welcomed by Community of Christ in Santiago, it wasn’t long until others followed. There is so much power in open-minded acceptance of others—in celebrating the Worth of All Persons.

Community of Christ now sponsors its own biker club. Members call themselves the Centuriones de Cristo. They wear a round church seal patch on the front of their leather jackets and their own distinct patch on their backs. Those shields and swords remind us of Paul’s challenge to put on the full armor of God (Ephesians 6). There’s nothing violent about these bikers.

On the Saturday of my visit, our biker club had banded with other similar-minded clubs to help a single mom and her kids. Everyone rode in a caravan to the town where this family lived, about 100 kilometers outside Santiago. They brought a new bed, new shoes, and food.

As their worth had been affirmed, so did the bikers affirm the worth of another. In the spirit of love and peace, the world is coming to know them.

Prayer for Peace God of bikers and those not known by the world, open our minds and hearts. Help us see past the leather jackets, the piercings, the tattoos, or anything that may seem different from us. May we see and know people as you see and know them.

Spiritual Practice: Honoring the Worth of All Persons Read Psalm 139:13–18. After each reading sit quietly and let the words sink deeply into your mind, heart, and body. What thoughts and feelings do you have about being “fearfully and wonderfully made”?

Sense the intimate knowledge and love God has for you and everyone. Be aware of the sacred worth of each person. Weep with God over the soul-wounding forces and events that rob people of dignity and worth. How does God invite you to notice, protect, heal, and affirm the spiritual identity of all God’s beloved people today? Pray for God’s compassion.

Peace Covenant Today, God, I will welcome the unfamiliar and discover Christ anew.

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8 Comments

  1. Deloris White

     /  3 September 2014

    Thanks Art, September 3,2014 I am cooking for a Bike Rally at “The Woodlands” Community of Christ campgrounds in Hale Mi. Sept. 12 –14. A great group of Christian riders.

  2. Larry Carmer

     /  3 September 2014

    I

  3. The patches were developed and are worn by members of Peace Riders Motorcycle Ministries. At present, Peace Riders has a group in Missouri, Canada, and New Jersey. We are in contact with Gustavo and share similar ministries with his group. I can be contacted at mo.peace.rider@gmail.com or through our website at prmmkc.org.

  4. Peter

     /  3 September 2014

    Thank you, Art! Wonderful lesson to be reminded of. Can I get one of those patches through Herald House?

  5. Vera Entwistle

     /  3 September 2014

    Your story brought back memories of a biker club in Sydney, Australia who decided to adopt Camp Quality as a charity. When they introduced themselves to me their names alone made me wonder what I was getting in to; the club President’s name was Animal! They looked tough but they had hearts of gold and their support became important. Never judge a book by its cover. Another lesson learned.

  6. D. R. McCall

     /  3 September 2014

    Bike riders come in from all walks of life with multiples needs in multiple cultures and societies. While visiting Taiwan in the larger cities the bike population exceeded the motorcars. This was due to economics. I saw families of four and more all on one bike.

  7. Glenn and Rose Peterson

     /  3 September 2014

    We loved this article and can see so much potential in sharing this church seal patch. Is there a place where we can purchase some? Thank you again for sharing in “Daily Bread”. Glenn and Rose Peterson Arkansaw, WI 54721 Date: Wed, 3 Sep 2014 06:14:13 +0000 To: peterson_rg@hotmail.com

  8. Gritz

     /  3 September 2014

    Thanks Art.

    Sent via the Samsung Galaxy S™ III, an AT&T 4G LTE smartphone

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