‘Striving Toward God’s Beloved Community: Conversations about Race, Privilege and Baltimore’ is a monthly book/discussion group led by Rev. Amy McCullough, which began in the fall of 2019.
In the summer of 2018, Grace held a series of ‘vital conversations’ around race and privilege. Members sought to create ways in which a faith community might begin to talk about race together and work toward a beloved kingdom of sisters and brothers that is God’s kingdom.
As a next step, this new/renewed group reads a selected book each month that addresses one or more of the topics of race and privilege. The goal of reading, sharing and listening is to increase our understanding of our history, our compassion for the diverse stories alive in our midst, and our ability to see Jesus’ face in one another.
The next gathering is Wednesday, Jan. 8 2020 at 7:30 in the Parlor; all are welcome. The book selection will be announced soon; copies may be borrowed from the church office, 410-433-6650.
Some of the potential titles are:
Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
Tears we Cannot Stop by Michael Eric Dyson
The Hero’s Fight: African Americans in West Baltimore and the Shadow of the State by Maria Patricia Fernandez-Kelly
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
Jesus and the Disinherited by Howard Thurman
The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead
I’m Still Here: Black Dignity is a World Made for Whiteness by Austin Channing Brown
White Frailty by Robin DiAngelo
The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore
Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates
Background: The Social Justice and Advocacy Committee formed in 2017, arising out of the Church Council’s desire to develop ministries that respond to the challenges of being a Christian witness in an unjust world and to promote awareness of the systemic issues that hinder human flourishing and common life.
The committee’s first action was to host the presentation “Civility in our Age” by Dan Buccino, who is leading the Hopkins Civility Initiative that has been operating since 1998. In the past year, the committee has explored working with the Family Mentor program of the International Rescue Committee (IRC) of Maryland, sent members to the National Alliance to End Homelessness Conference in Washington, DC, researched housing issues and legislation related to housing in Baltimore and learned about the funding formula for public education in Maryland. They are currently developing initiatives to impact the treatment of immigrants at our borders.
If you would like to learn more or become involved in Grace’s Social Justice and Advocacy work, contact Pastor Dane Wood.