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Volume VII  Issue 14          

  5 August 2011




After a record hot July in many areas across the country, August has finally arrived! And what better reason could there be to be excited for August than it meaning Sing A New Song is just around the corner?! Maybe you're most excited about all of that coffee and hospitality we'll share while there, as Jennifer Mihok suggests in her latest blog. Or perhaps you can't wait that long, and it's the festivities of the pre-day that you're excited for? We know OnFire is excited about the young adult pre-day! They're even going to be writing daily blogs about it: be sure you're following along!

That's not it? Maybe you are still reeling with appreciation for folks like Jim Winkler, General Secretary of the General Board of Church and Society, who gave us another reason to say "Amen!" last week as they were arrested while praying for a faithful federal budget in the Capitol Rotunda.

With so many great reasons to celebrate, we at MFSA invite you to consider celebrating throughout the month of August as we prepare for Women's Equality Day on August 26 and celebrate with Detroit's Re-Tool for Peace Conference that starts today. You can also celebrate with us by making small changes such as adding a GoodSearch toolbar to your browser or liking us on Facebook. Looking for something bigger? Act locally and engage with your community or congregation to be a part of the DREAM Act Sabbath!

Indeed, there is lots happening and August shall be a full and exciting month! I hope you will join us on this journey, and look forward to seeing you Facebook soon... and Sing A New Song shortly thereafter!

Grace and peace,
Jen Tyler
Associate for Movement Building
NatUpdateNationalNational Update

Let the People Say Amen! 

Thursday, July 28th, 2011 at 1 PM in the Capitol rotunda (Washington, DC), 11 religious leaders of an interfaith coalition to protect the poor were arrested after they joined hands and sat down to protest the direction of current federal budget debates. Among them were two United Methodist leaders; Jim Winkler, top executive for the United Methodist Board of Church and Society, the denomination's social action agency, and the Rev. Bob Edgar, a United Methodist elder and president of Common Cause. We, the leadership at the Methodist Federation for Social Action (MFSA), would like to add our "Amen" to the efforts of this inter-faith coalition of advocates. We applaud your faithfulness and willingness to sit in solidarity with the voiceless poor in our nation!  


You can continue reading MFSA's full statement of support here. Be sure to read to the end, where you can find contact information to send your own note of appreciation to our faithful leaders!

SANSSing a New Song
This Way to the Coffeee 


After two and a half years on the staff of MFSA, I am in the midst of a move from DC to Boston, where I will begin seminary this fall. For the past few weeks I've spent a significant portion of my time sorting through boxes and files-at my house in DC, at the MFSA office, and now at my parents' house in Pennsylvania. A few days ago I was going through stacks of cards and letters that I had collected while living in Germany, and I came across a folded piece of white paper with colorful letters in child's handwriting: "Jennifer, Hier geht's zum Kaffeetrinken" (this way to the coffee)...


What do coffee (and rainbows in the photo!) have to do with Sing A New Song? Keep reading Jennifer's blog to find out - and to find out where you can find both while in Ohio! 

SparksSparks: OnFire in action
 Follow the OnFire Blog!


Have you seen it? Do you read it? Did you know it was there?  


OnFire keeps an active blog at There you'll find regular updates from progressive young adults blogging about events (past, present and future!), reflecting on life, engaging with issues that matter to us, and inviting you to engage in conversation and beyond.


Interested in following along? When you visit the blog, don't forget to sign up to FOLLOW the blog by clicking on the link on the right side of the page! Or SUBSCRIBE To the posts by utilizing the "Subscribe" link at the bottom of the page! 


Last Call: Sing a New Song Pre-Day

for Young Adults! 


If you identify as a young adult, you are invited to attend the young adult pre-day event at Sing A New Song!

By now we're sure you've heard that Sing A New Song is happening in Huron, Ohio from August 25-28. We hope you also knew that you also know that if you get there a few hours early (9am instead of 7pm Thursday, August 25) you are invited to take part in a pre-day event!

The young adults of OnFIre and MOSAIC will be gathering for a day of education and action, dialogue and action planning. It will be a day you won't want to miss! We will conclude the day with worship at 2pm: if you can't be there by 9, we sill invite you to come and worship with us as we close out the day and prepare for the rest of Sing A New Song!
Who is OnFire?  We are United Methodist young adults reclaiming our Wesleyan heritage of spiritual and social transformation. We are empowering young adults to impact our church and our world. OnFire organizes as the young adult chapter of MFSA.  Check out our blog at:  If you are interested in contributing to the OnFire blog, please contact Shannon Sullivan.
ChaptersChapters and Partners


On Friday, August 5, the 66th anniversary of Hiroshima Day, Detroit MFSA is joining labor & trade union brothers & sisters to call on our government to:
  • Abolish all weapons of mass destruction.
  • End two wars that should have ended years ago.
  • Use the billions saved from both peace actions to build at home.
  • Convert empty auto factories and steel mills into Green Manufacturing sites, making solar cells, wind turbines, fast trains, new train tracks, and all-electric vehicles and parts.
  • Create a jobs program to put young people to work weatherizing homes, factories and offices, saving energy costs for seniors, local governments and businesses.
For more information, please see this event flyer! Hope to see you there!
TakeActionTake Action


 DREAM Act Sabbath


On June 28th, the Senate Judiciary Committee Subcommittee on Immigration Refugees, and Border Security held a hearing on the DREAM Act.  For the first time in years, public support for positive immigration reform surpassed opposition.  In many ways, momentum is building!


To continue building support this year, diverse communities of faith around the country will participate in DREAM Sabbath 2011, September 16th - October 9th.  During DREAM Sabbath 2011, communities of faith will lift up the lives of DREAM students in the prayers, readings, reflection and education during at least one Sabbath service as a way to help educate and spread awareness of DREAM students and their hopes to attain full recognition of their contributions to our communities.


You can find more information on DREAM Sabbath 2011 here. Once you have read more and checked out the resources that are readily available to you, you can sign up to take part here ! 


ProgressivePonderingsProgressive Ponderings


 Women's Equality Day 


On July 19-20, 1848 the First Women's Rights Conference was held in Seneca Falls, NY. It was there that the demand for women's right to vote was first voiced. It took 72 years of unrelenting campaigning for U.S. women to finally win that right. Then, in 1971, at the behest of Rep. Bella Abzug (D-NY), the U.S. Congress designated August 26 as "Women's Equality Day."


The date was selected to commemorate the 1920 passage of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, granting women the right to vote. This was the culmination of a massive, peaceful civil rights movement by women that had its formal beginnings in 1848 at the world's first women's rights convention, in Seneca Falls, New York.


The observance of Women's Equality Day not only commemorates the passage of the 19th Amendment, but also calls attention to women's continuing efforts toward full equality. Workplaces, libraries, organizations, and public facilities now participate with Women's Equality Day programs, displays, video showings, or other activities.


You can learn more about Women's Equality Day here.

FacebookSocial Media Corner

Good Search 


Did you know there's a search engine that can help MFSA raise money... simply by using it!? They've even made it as easy as possible: you can install a GoodSearch toolbar! Simply click on the image to the right and type in "Methodist Federation for Social Action" in the box that asks, "Who do you GoodSearch for?" That's it! Just let the pennies add up... MFSA will average a donation of $.01 every time you search!


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How is your community actively engaging in the fight for social justice?     


Log in to Facebook, "Like" our page, and share your story. 


Want to make the conversation PERSONAL?  Host a Connecting Voices meet-up in your area.