Rachel Held Evans was a voice of reason in the face of conservative Christianity despite her young age. I became a member of her community of "the church's refugees" many years ago when I began to read her blog and listen to her interviews. Having been raised in the Bible Belt, she rebelled against the exclusionary nature of conservative Christianity and proclaimed
"a more just and expansive vision of God’s love, to encourage others, and to amplify voices that are typically marginalized in the Church and in the world."
Her voice must not be silenced, and her work must not be forgotten. I challenge all of us to stand up to the voice from the institutional church which preaches an exclusionary gospel; the gospel of Jesus was the most inclusionary message of all time. We are compelled to preach it, live it and love it.
Rest in Peace, Rachel. You were certainly a good and faithful servant, a beloved child of God. I pray for you husband and your beautiful children, that they will always know what a difference you made in the world!