Thomas Kemper, the UMC General Secretary of Global Missions, has written a commentary about the Neo-nazi images that came out of Charlottesville. His comments are particularly interesting, as Kemper is a German. His nationality makes the Neo-nazi imagery especially repugnant to him, but his role in the UMC gives him a better perspective on the United States — for example, he attended the 2016 Annual Conference of the Alaska United Methodist Conference here in Anchorage — than many of the voices commenting on Charlottesville. Kemper concludes his commentary with the question that is so difficult for us to answer:
We cannot tolerate racism, white supremacy, and Nazi hatred. That much is clear, but what about ministry to neo-Nazis—those who are full of fear and anxiety and have lost their way in the world? How do we welcome them, offering God’s transforming grace? Is that possible?