& the church
The terms Imago Dei are more than fancy theological words. These words contain the essence of humanity. They speak about the fact that “ The crown of God’s handiwork is human life .”  This handiwork is inclusive of people of all colors and tongues. As our nation faces the challenges of responding to racism, biases, injustices and violence, the Church and our Network, cannot remain silent. To remain in silence is to be complicit to the injustices that have been perpetrated for so many years upon communities of color. We realize that these conversations are hard, yet necessary. We encourage you to take the time to read and assimilate the following statements based on: Learn, Listen, Lament, Leave, Love and Lead. The following statement of the Southern New England Ministry Network has been affirmed by our Presbytery.
We can see the injustice and inequality in our lives and in the world. We are ready to rise up. But how, exactly, do we do this? How does one reconcile? What we need is a clear sense of direction. Based on her extensive consulting experience with churches, colleges and organizations, Rev. Dr. Brenda Salter McNeil has created a roadmap to show us the way.
The Color of Compromise is both enlightening and compelling, telling a history we either ignore or just don’t know. Equal parts painful and inspirational, it details how the American church has helped create and maintain racist ideas and practices. You will be guided in thinking through concrete solutions for improved race relations and a racially inclusive church.
Love your neighbor. Jesus’ simple command can feel overwhelming when our neighbor looks and lives differently than we do. Racial and economic tensions across the country have resulted in deep dividing lines that seem really intimidating to cross. Neighborliness is a practical guide to bridging those dividing lines and learning to recognize and amplify the beauty of God in our communities.
The prophets of old were not easy to listen to because they did not flatter. They did not cajole. They spoke hard words that often chafed and unsettled their listeners. Like the Old Testament prophets, and more recent prophetic voices like Frederick Douglass, Dr. Eric Mason calls the evangelical church to a much-needed reckoning. In a time when many feel confused, complacent, or even angry, he challenges the church.
Just Mercy is at once an unforgettable account of an idealistic, gifted young lawyer’s coming of age, a moving window into the lives of those he has defended, and an inspiring argument for compassion in the pursuit of true justice.
Racism is more than a black and white issue. It is a people issue—a spiritual issue. The church must lead the charge and raise a standard against the spirit of racism. Dr. James E. Collins confronts this emotionally charged issue head on, from a biblical perspective. The Gospel of Christ knows no color, gender, denomination, social class or any other separation. It crosses all barriers … to set all people free.