“This is what the Lord requires from you: to do justice, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.” – Micah 6:8
Our mission: to increase awareness of justice issues impacting our brothers and sisters in our local community, Chicago and the state; and to provide opportunities for Southminster members and friends to participate in actions that influence public policy toward a more just world.
“Woe to those who make unjust laws, to those who issue oppressive decrees, to deprive the poor of their rights and withhold justice from the oppressed of my people.” – Isaiah 10:1-2
What God Requires of Us-Our Communal Sin and The Path to Racial Justice
In November we had a thought provoking zoom series that will certainly be followed up with some action steps for our congregation. The prophet Micah tells us that to “act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God“. We took a closer look at what it means to act justly and to love mercy with a new four week class. The purpose of What God Requires of Us is to better understand the experiences of black and white people in our country and how they’re different, why justice should be a core value for Christ- followers, and how we can begin to take action to address the racial injustices in our country. We heard testimonies from Jose & Jesse Rojo (Community Renewal Society), Terry Clarke (Community Renewal Society), & Pastor Matt Gearke.
Members of our own congregation, as well as members of Christian Church of Arlington Heights and a member from Lutheran Church of the Cross joined us! We learned about the suffering and challenges of people, of the wealth disparages in America, effects of chronic trauma and systemic racism. We listed action steps like supporting effective legislation and policies that combat racism, support Black businesses, sit in on town hall equity meetings, talking to others who hold different views than we do, listen and interact with Black and Brown people, and more! Our next series will be on poverty in America.
Resources on Racism
Your Faith in Action team is compiling a list of resources addressing racism topics, and would love your input. If you have seen a movie or read a book that increased your understanding of white privilege, systemic racism, policing, the history of racism in the U.S., etc., please send the titles
to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will add them to this list.
Recommended by SPC Members
The subject of race can be very touchy. As finance executive Mellody Hobson says, it’s a “conversational third rail.” But, she says, that’s exactly why we need to start talking about it. In this engaging, persuasive talk, Hobson makes the case that speaking openly about race — and particularly about diversity in hiring — makes for better businesses and a better society.
A lecture by Carol Anderson, Professor and Chair of African American Studies, Emory University.
Oprah Magazine’s list of movies about race and racism that can be a crucial tool for understanding this country’s racist foundation—and its pervasive effect on society, culture, economy, the criminal justice system, and beyond.
Film based on Angie Thomas’s first novel about a teenage girl who grapples with racism, police brutality, and activism after witnessing her black friend murdered by the police.
Hidden Figures (also a movie)
The untold true story of four African-American women who helped launch our nation into space, by Margot Lee Shetterly.
Debby Irving’s personal narrative about her “sometimes cringe-worthy” struggle to understand racism and social tensions. She also explains why and how she’s changed the way she talks about racism, work in racially mixed groups, and understand the racial justice movement as a whole. Note that SPC will be hosting a discussion of this book later in the summer.
Drawing on his decades of experience, Alex Kotlowitz set out to chronicle one summer in Chicago, writing of those who have emerged from the violence and whose stories reveal the capacity–and the breaking point–of the human heart and soul. The result is a spellbinding collection of deeply intimate stories that upend what we think we know about gun violence in America.
From Austin Channing Brown, a powerful new voice on racial justice, an eye-opening account of growing up Black, Christian, and female in middle-class white America.
Attorney Laura Caldwell tells the first-hand story of her client, 19-year-old Jovan Mosley, a good kid from one of Chicago’s very bad neighborhoods, who was coerced into confessing to a crime he didn’t commit. Charged with murder, he spent five years and eight months in a prison for violent criminals. Deeply affecting, Long Way Home is a remarkable story of how change can happen even in a flawed system and of how friendship can emanate from the most unexpected places.
In Ibram X. Kendi asks us to think about what an antiracist society might look like, and how we can play an active role in building it.
A list compiled by Ibram X. Kendi for people beginning their anti-racist journey.
Michelle Alexander givesa stunning account of the rebirth of a caste-like system in the U.S., one that has resulted in millions of African Americans locked behind bars and then relegated to a permanent second-class status—denied the very rights supposedly won in the Civil Rights Movement.
The Evanston Public Library recommends books, articles, videos and podcasts on anti-racism, equity, diversity, inclusion and social justice.
Community Renewal Society
- Increasing police accountability in Chicago
- Creating affordable housing and good job opportunities in underserved communities of color
- Educating people about the Fair Tax constitutional amendment on the Nov. 3, 2020 ballot, which would help bring billions of much needed revenue to our state to invest in just and safe communities
- Ending money bond and dramatically reducing the number of people incarcerated in our state as they await trial
PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH USA STANDS FIRMLY AGAINST CAPITAL PUNISHMENT
Families Belong Together
There are many words from the Bible that we can turn to in reflecting on the current immigration crisis. The forced separation of small children and their families at the border has brought into sharp focus the cruel and inhumane response recently employed. I, Pastor Liz, would invite you to read the words of Deuteronomy 10:17-19, Matthew 25: 35-46, and Mark 9:37, 10:13-16 and reflect on how they speak to the current crisis.
Attached is a response from the Stated Clerk of the Presbyterian Church, USA, about the current crisis where small children were forceably separated from their families. https://www.pcusa.org/site_media/media/uploads/oga/pdf/jhn_statement_child_separation_at_borders_061618.pdf
Muslim-Christian Interfaith Dialogue
A small group of individuals from Southminster and the Islamic Society of Northwest Suburbs have been meeting twice every month since January 2018. Check out our interfaith conversations and what we’ve learned about each other. Click here to view our SPC ISNS Interfaith Group Summer Dialogue.
On December 1, 2017, 16 Muslim and Christian men and women began an inter-faith journey together.
Southminster and Islamic Society of Northwest Suburbs, a mosque in Rolling Meadows, has begun a dialogue between faiths that will provide an opportunity for Christians and Muslims to develop genuine friendships and better understand each other and our different faiths.
Beginning in January 2018, this inter-faith group will meet every second Sunday of the month at 2:00 p.m. at Islamic Society of Northwest Suburbs in Rolling Meadows and every fourth Friday of the month at 7:00 p.m. at Southminster.