Dear Church Community,
As we move forward in 2022, I look forward to reaching out and connecting with other churches and communities that share our values. This includes UCC congregations, ecumenical Christian churches, interfaith groups, and non-profit secular organizations. In this (fingers crossed) post-pandemic era, it’s time to work together with those outside our own small circle on issues of racial justice, affordable housing, human rights (including refugees and the LGBTQ+ community), and environmental justice. We can’t do it all, but when in solidarity with others we can do more!
In this vein, I’m delighted to announce our congregation recently received a small grant from the Justice and Witness Network of the Central Atlantic Conference of the UCC that will pay for us to become a member of the Washington Interfaith Network (WIN). Founded in 1996, WIN is a broad-based, multi-racial, multi-faith, non-partisan, District-wide citizens’ power organization, rooted in local congregations and associations. WIN is committed to training and developing neighborhood leaders, addressing community issues, and holding elected and corporate officials accountable. Many thanks to Ashley Holst, our Mission & Social Action Chair, for taking the lead on applying for this grant. I look forward to working as part of WIN to create change here in DC!
Another example of ecumenical and interfaith cooperation is the Interfaith Council of Metropolitan Washington (IFCMW) and one of its programs, the Interfaith Leadership Forum (IFL). IFL will present the following online event Thursday, February 24, covering religious nationalism in general with a special focus on Christian Nationalism and White Supremacist ideology in the United States.
This program will explore the nature of global nationalism and its specific manifestation in the U.S. Our keynote speaker is Dr. Mark Juergensmeyer, who has been studying this trend for over thirty years. Dr. Juergensmeyer’s remarks will be followed by a panel of diverse faith leaders sharing their views on building interfaith solidarity to resist the White Supremacist Christian ideology threatening our nation. There will also be small group break-out sessions for interpersonal dialogue. This program is a forum for people of faith to learn, become activated, and feel equipped to respond together effectively.
Finally, I’m happy to remind you our congregation is co-hosting a Jazz Vespers Service in honor of Black History Month at People’s UCC on Saturday, February 26 at 5 pm. Rev. Dr. Jacqui Lewis will preach, and you’re welcome to register here to come in person or join the service online at https://peopleschurchucc.org.
Blessings of Peace, Health, Love, Joy, and Justice,
Black History Month
Cleveland Park Library Book Sale, 2/26—Mary Jane Glass is organizing a book sale at the library from 10 am-2 pm on Saturday, 2/26. David Grimsted is collecting books for a special Black History Month Table at the sale. Relevant books include those about Black or Native people, advocates and allies, racism and racial justice, and the Civil Rights Movement. Please bring donations to the Friend boxes on the library’s bottom floor (at the end of the long corridor in front of the elevator) or to David’s house, 3434 3oth St NW (on the corner of Ordway St NW). Questions? Please contact David: email@example.com.
Descended from the Promised Land, 2/23— A hundred years after the massacre in the Greenwood District of Tulsa, aka Black Wall Street, the UCC invites us to watch this short film, Descended from the Promised Land: the Legacy of Black Wall Street, which reveals the lingering economic, psychological, and emotional impacts of the Tulsa Massacre through the lens of descendants. Film at 6 pm; panel following. Register here.