Listening, learning, and acting.  

From a diversity of Black voices we have all been hearing the call to listen, to learn, and then to do something.  There is no shortage of resources, no dearth of organizations to support.  It can feel overwhelming.  We want to offer some counsel.

First, Listen to and learn from the group of interfaith Black Clergy who led Sunday's  #BostonBlackMemorial for George Floyd, Breonna Taylor + Ahmaud Arbery.  Listen to the powerful voice of Rev. Mariama White-Hammond, whose euology was included in a Religion News Service round up of what clergy preached this past weekend. Hear what the Spirit is saying to God's people:

"Racism is not just bad, it is plain sinful. It breaks God's heart. And what breaks God's heart even more is when those of us who claim to be the people of God are complicit in the sin. Far too long, white American churches have been silent in the face of suffering by God's children of African descent. ... For this, the church must repent. No one who claims to speak for God can be silent in this moment."

Learn : We understand that we are dealing with anti-Black racism in the country, the Commonwealth, and the Church, including within our own historic institution. With Black two pastors on staff, the Massachusetts Council of Churches has the capacity to offer programming for local churches on dismantling anti-Black racism, Black Church history and building institutional capacity for racial justice in your community.  Rev. Kenneth Young, Director of External Relationships and Rev. Carrington Moore, Lydia Fellows Program Director are available for webinars and conversation with your church, with suggested honoraria starting at $250. To schedule, please contact: council@masscouncilofchurches.org 

We also invite you to better learn the skill of listening from Chaplain Ylisse C. Bess, who is one of our inaugural class of Lydia Fellows in the link below.  Although Ylisse wrote this article before the death of George Floyd, her wisdom about listening to and making space for heartache speaks to the grief of this moment in a particular way.

Then, take action by supporting the One Church Fund.  We shattered our seed goal of $50,000, and are three quarters of the way to our next goal of $100,000.  Can you contribute to help us reach it?  We are so grateful to everyone who has given money to support Black, immigrant, unhoused, and unaffiliated churches, who doing double and triple duty in caring for the humanitarian needs of their parishioners and neighbors.  If you've already given, or can't give right now, please spread the word that the grant application period is OPEN!  And check out the skill share section of the One Church Fund website to see what you might be able to offer to help a church build the capacity they need to continue to serve their community.

There are many ways to listen, learn, and act.  We pray that God will continue to lead us all on the way to dismantling the sinful systems of racism in our hearts, homes, organizations, communities, country and world.

In hope,
Revs. Laura, Meagan, Kenneth and Carrington
 
 
 
 
 
We are three-quarters of the way to $100,000
Can you help us make it there?  
Give online at www.onechurchfund.org
 
 
 
 
 
Lydia Fellows Spotlight:
Reflections from Chaplain Ylisse C. Bess

Hospital Chaplain and Lydia Fellow Chaplain Ylisse C. Bess reflects on the core skill of her vocation: listening. In this time, it’s a skill that all Christian leaders can benefit from cultivating.  Read her full article here.
 
 
 
 
 

Seminar for Haitian Pastors

On Thursday June 11 at 6pm, colleagues at the IFSI - Immigrant Family Services Institute-USA and the Haitian Evangelical Pastors's Association will host a seminar for Church leaders on COVID19 , reopening guidelines and a conversation with epidemiologist Dr. Regina LaRocque. It will be both live streamed to IFSI's Facebook Page and via Zoom in Haitian Creole, and a recording will be available.  https://tufts.zoom.us/j/91610322544

 
 
 
 
 

masscouncilofchurches.org      |     (617) 523-2771
 
 
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