Loving Our Neighbors
Sometimes I feel like I’m living in a bubble. My secure, middle-class life can feel completely separate from the lives of my neighbors, down the street or just a mile away, whose experience daily frustrations and limitations of poverty. Believing that our lives are more connected than I can see, and trusting that Jesus loves all of us, I look for ways to get outside my bubble. The relationships I’ve found are a blessing to me.
Church is one place where this bubble-effect happens. As congregations and as individuals we need to understand what poverty is and how our expectations are shaped by living in largely middle-class communities.
We also are all becoming more aware of racial segregation shapes all our lives, including our lives in body of Christ. If we do not see or respond to the oppression of racism, we have work to do. We need to learn (1) to see it and (2) how to actively work against it.
Below are descriptions of workshops that can help us to see. Please join us for an upcoming session or contact me for more information.
– Susan Squires
“If you pour yourself out for the hungry and satisfy the desires of the afflicted, then shall your light rise in the darkness and your gloom be as the noonday.” (Isaiah 58:10)
The Color of Compromise
The Color of Compromise shows us the American church’s history of complicity with racism. Jemar Tisby’s bestselling book has been adapted as a video course, which we will use as the basis of an 11-week group discussion via Zoom. If you have been wondering what all the protests are about, or if you want to consider how to respond as Christian, this is for you.
We are working out some technical details, but expect to open registration soon for a January-March session.
Bridges Out of Poverty
Bridges Out of Poverty is designed to help us recognize the hidden rules (unspoken assumptions) of generational poverty, middle class, and wealth. For example, the role of language, types of support systems and resources can be different. Understanding differences helps us to build relationships with patience, generosity, and without judgment.
Be the Bridge: Whiteness 101
When white people begin to work against racism, we often discover we have a lot to learn. This resource introduces four important concepts: white supremacy, white fragility, white identity, and white privilege — all in the context of our Christian identity.
When Helping Hurts
When Helping Hurts is a series of six, one-hour classes designed to help churches recognize blind spots in our ministry to the materially poor, to turn away from help that disempowers, and to turn toward help that empowers people and heals broken relationships as we depend on Christ to heal us all.