Even before Ferguson, MO. and many incidents of racial injustice in policing this summer, a group of Old Firsters had begun to discuss our church hosting what in the UCC is known as “A Sacred Conversation on Race.” It is a church-wide initiative for UCC congregations that are interested in seeking to confront the sin of racism — in hopes of seeing the Church live and be as one, and the world become a place of justice and peace for all.
The idea came up at Old First last Spring out of the Adult Forum which had covered a few different topics that involved racial justice. Their last program was called “Traces of the Trade,” about a Euro-American family in New England that realizes its start in the U.S. came from the slave trade. The Old Firsters participating in those sessions found the program troubling and challenging and wanted to do more.
A Sacred Conversation on Race can take many forms. Some congregations take on anti-racism training to get to the heart of how and where they could make a difference in their own attitudes and behaviors. Others address the matter by dealing with White privilege which contributes to the racism experienced by non-White individuals living in the United States.
Using the Resoource Guide the denomination has provided, a planning team is plotting what we might do at Old First for our Sacred Conversation on Race. The people involved have included Delilah, Gerry, Jackie, Margaret E., Margaret R., Michael C., Michael and Mimi J. They are inviting some others to their work, to get diversity among the planners. They believe they can help our church to engage this issue of race based on where individuals are, realizing there is work for ALL of us to do.
Last Sunday, people gathered to brainstorm possibilities. They will meet again on Saturday, Oct. 4th in the social hall. If you are interested in getting involved, you might speak with Delilah or Margaret R.