The Reverends William Barber II and Liz Theoharis stand as co-leaders of the revived Poor People's Campaign in Washington.
Photo: Mark Humphrey//REX/Shutterstock
Prayers, rallies and arrests mark Poor People's Campaign launch in D.C. and at U.S. state capitols
Written by Connie Larkman
Thousands of activists calling for a just world for all people rallied on the grounds of the U.S. Capitol and more than 30 statehouses around the country on Monday, March 14, during the launch of 40 days of action by the Poor People's Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival. This campaign, which continues the 1968 initiative of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., is a nationwide call to action, aimed at changing legislation that penalizes poor people. The movement calls for justice for the most vulnerable, an end to systematic racism, ecological devastation, and an economy built around war.
"Sadly, a Poor People's Campaign is as relevant and timely today as it was 50 years ago," said Sandy Sorensen, director of the UCC Washington, D.C. Office. "The UCC strongly supported these historic efforts and will continue the struggle in the days to come. It is simply morally unacceptable that so many working families live in poverty in the richest nation on earth."
Carrying signs that read "Fight Poverty, Not the Poor," "Starving a Child is Violence," and "Dismantle White Supremacy," participants in the Poor People's Campaign are demanding a restoration of the Voting Rights Act, repeal of the 2017 federal tax law, implementation of federal and state living wage laws, universal single-payer health care, and clean water for all.
The Rev. Nancy Petty, pastor of Pullen Memorial Baptist Church in Raleigh, led the rally in Raleigh that drew several hundred people to Bicentennial Plaza just south of Jones Street.
above photo shared by Jane Smith
Portrays a presence by Community UCC, Raleigh, N.C.
Lancaster Seminary Announces Rev. Traci Blackmon Scholarship
LANCASTER, PA - Lancaster Theological Seminary is funding a new, one-time merit-based scholarship named in honor of its 2018 commencement speaker, The Reverend Traci Blackmon.
In the fall, Lancaster Theological Seminary will award a $1,000 tuition scholarship to an incoming student "who demonstrates an expansive vision for the Church as a sacred launching pad for community engagement and social change." Lancaster Seminary President Rev. Carol E. Lytch, Ph.D., in announcing the scholarship, said, "Rev. Blackmon is an exemplary pastoral leader for our time, calling us to action and proclaiming the need to create a Moral Revival in our nation. In honor of her example, we will award this one-time scholarship to an incoming student in the fall." Rev. Blackmon delivered the Seminary's commencement address on May 5. She is executive minister of Justice & Local Ministries for The United Church of Christ in Cleveland. She also serves as senior pastor of Christ the King United Church of Christ, Florissant, Missouri.
A prominent community leader, a gifted preacher, and a much-loved pastor and teacher, Rev. Blackmon rose to national prominence for her leadership in the aftermath of the 2014 killing of Michael Brown, Jr., in Ferguson, Missouri.
UCC Insurance Board offers Legal Service for Local Congregations -- Reviewing Contracts
This past weekend, the Association of Conference Attorneys held its annual meeting at 700 Prospect in Cleveland, Ohio. We were fortunate to have nine attorneys from the Conferences, Pension Boards, and National Setting join the meeting, as well as Rachel Hackenberg from MESA and Tim Harris from the Insurance Board.
Tim highlighted a service that is offered by the Insurance Board to Local Churches in the IB program that is underutilized. The Insurance Board will review contracts for Local Churches that involve building and lot maintenance (for example, snow removal) and repair (for example, roof repair or replacement). The IB can make recommendations as to the indemnification provisions in the contract and recommend appropriate levels of insurance that should be carried by the vendors/contractors, as well as make recommendations on limitations on liability. A professional set of eyes on these types of contracts can really make a difference should a loss arise out of the contract. Churches in the IB program should contact Loss Control at 800-437-8830 for information.
Community Garden Sows Seeds, Reaps Hope
For the volunteers at First Reformed United Church of Christ, the Biblical principle of sowing and reaping literally comes around each season. Their small community garden that sprouted back in the spring of 2011 produces a bounty of fresh fruits and vegetables for local shelters in Davidson County…read more