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Volume VI Issue 12
|| 11 August 2010
E-news might have taken a bit of a summer vacation, but MFSA certainly hasn't! There's a lot to share in this week's update. The Connecting Voices project has launched, MFSA and RMN are planning for next year's Sing a New Song, and--of course--General Conference organizing is getting underway. You'll also hear a firsthand account from an immigration advocate in Arizona. And don't miss a few Quotes from the week as we celebrate Prop 8's defeat and support the Islamic community center in downtown Manhattan.
It's finally here! You've seen it in our brochure and in The Progressive Voice. MFSA's Connecting Voices
initiative has now officially launched. Connecting Voices is a chance
for progressive United Methodists to come together and talk about how
faith informs their lives. We're encouraging MFSA members to reach out
beyond the "usual circles" to other folks in our churches, conferences,
and communities who are interested in discussing what it means to be a
progressive United Methodist. You'll find information on our website
on how to gather, host and lead a gathering. Be the first to organize a
meet-up and be featured in MFSA E-news! For questions, contact Jennifer Mihok, MFSA National Outreach and Communications Coordinator.
|Chapters and Partners|
Sing a New Song: Aug. 24-28, 2011
The Reconciling Ministries Network (RMN) and MFSA are co-organizing Sing a New Song, a gathering of progressive and justice-seeking United Methodists to be held from August 24-28, 2011 at the Sawmill Creek Resort near Huron, Ohio (on Lake Erie). Join hundreds of United Methodists in singing and organizing for justice and inclusion for all God's children as we celebrate in joyful worship designed by Mark Miller and Tanya Bennett. This is an exciting opportunity for MFSA and RMN members to come together and examine multiple justice issues that we, as a church, are called to address. By combining the RMN Convocation and MFSA Voices of Faith into this one event, we'll be able to meet new friends, connect with old ones, celebrate shared work and learn about new places where we can be a voice for justice. It will also serve as a kick-off event for our common witness organizing for General Conference 2012. And most importantly, it will be a place where the Spirit of God moves and breathes new life into the beloved community.
So save the date: Aug. 24-28, 2011. More info to come!
|Looking toward General Conference 2012|
MFSA seeks funding for GC organizing position
MFSA has applied for a grant to fund a full-time organizer to work on social justice issues with MFSA, Reconciling Ministries Network, Affirmation and other caucuses and groups affiliated with the United Methodist Church as we approach General Conference 2012. This is a one-year position that is renewable for several more months to take us through September 2012. The position will focus initially on working with coalition members preparing for Annual Conferences 2011 and then on General Conference 2012. The ideal candidate will have knowledge of and experience with the UMC structure including General Conference, good people skills, and ability to organize. Pending grant approval, the official job posting will appear in mid to late October, with hiring occurring no later than Jan. 1, 2011. Stay tuned for more information.
|Sparks: OnFire in action|
|Blogging from Arizona|
BorderLinks Program Organizer Margi Ault-Duell blogs about her experience during protests in Tuscon as SB 1070 took effect. OnFire, MFSA's young adult network, participated in a delegation with BorderLinks in October of 2009. To see pictures of the trip, visit our Facebook page.
"We will not comply! We will not comply!" filled the air in downtown Phoenix on Thursday, July 29th - the day that Arizona's harshly anti-immigrant bill SB 1070 went into effect. [...] On one side of the police unit was a crowd of people yelling, "Cops and the Klan go hand in hand!" while on the other side a line of Unitarians spanned the crosswalk sporting their yellow "Standing on the Side of Love" t-shirts. The tension in the air was as tangible as the humidity. More...
Quotes from the week:
"Proposition 8 was premised on the belief that same-sex couples simply are not as good as opposite-sex couples. Whether that belief is based on moral disapproval of homosexuality, animus toward gays and lesbians, or simply a belief that a relationship between a man and woman is inherently better than a relationship between two men or two women, this belief is not a proper basis on which to legislate. The Constitution cannot control private biases, but neither can it tolerate them."
Federal District Judge Vaughn R. Walker in the decision to strike down Proposition 8
"Political controversies come and go, but our values and our traditions endure - and there is no neighborhood in this City that is off limits to God's love and mercy, as the religious leaders here with us today can attest."
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg in endorsement of the plan to build an Islamic community center in downtown Manhattan.