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March on Washington in August
New Faces at MFSA
You Can Help One Community
Progressive Ponderings:News and Job Openings
Did You Move?
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Volume VIII Issue 14                          

24 July 2013

 

                        

Greetings!

Last week, I attended the Fellowship of United Methodists in Music and Worship Arts Convocation in Pittsburgh, PA, where hundreds of The United Methodist Church's most creative people were in one space to learn from one another. Surrounded by Pittsburgh's three rivers, the Convocation focused on the theme "Bridging Our Hearts to the World." MFSA's presence at the convocation included a display table with information about our organization, heart shaped prayer labyrinths, and the opportunity to sign up for our Social Justice Prayer Network.

 

One morning, a Deacon approached me. The previous week's lectionary combined with that morning's worship service had drawn her to me. As a straight ally, she feels called to witness to the fact that her LGBT colleagues aren't paid at the same rates and provided the same benefits that she can access. She feels called to give witness to the injustice of the Church and turn her privilege into power-sharing.

 

For me, that's the central message of the Gospel. When we think of power, we often think of the misuse of power - by governments and corporations; even the Church. Bu the entire message of the Incarnation is that God shared power with humanity to overcome the injustices of the world. God is still sharing that power, and calls us to the ministry of power-sharing. Recent headlines are teaching us how important this ministry is: Voting Rights Act Gutted By Supreme Court, Zimmerman Acquitted: Self-Defense, Congress Considers Employment Non-Discrimination Act. These situations and many more that don't make the headlines remind us of the need use our voices, our hands, and our feet to be witnesses to God's justice and grace.  

 

So, good MFSAers, how are you going to share your power in this world? It's a daunting task, but one Christ calls us to again and again and again.

  
Grace and peace,  
 
Chett Pritchett 
Interim Executive Director 
AMarch on Washington in August: Jobs! Justice! Voting Rights!

 

This August the nation will mark fifty years since the 1963 March on Washington, also known as the March for Jobs, Justice, and Freedom but best known for the stirring "I Have a Dream" address delivered by the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. The Methodist Federation for Social Action welcomes constituents and friends to participate in the array of celebrations, colloquia, and actions commemorating that historic day, regarded as instrumental to the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

 

MFSA also invites you to renew the thirst for true wholeness as we recall that the journey is far from over. The recent Decision by the Supreme Court has sent critical provisions of the Voting Rights Act back to congress and, now as much as ever, there is a need to stand as witnesses to God's vision of grace and justice, working together to clear the lingering stains of poverty, discrimination, and oppression. Join us for a time of learning, using our voices, and realizing King's dream.

 

The MFSA Office will be open on the 24th and the 28th, accordingly,to provide a place to leave bags, hydrate/refresh, make signs, coordinate and collaborate.

Plans are in formation for a teach-in and worship service on Tuesday, August 27th in downtown Washington, DC.

Coming to DC for the Reconciling Ministries Network Convocation? Come early and join us for these events!

Can't make it to DC, but still want to lift your voice? We'll be working on a litany you can use in worship the Sunday before and a postcard project to hold our elected leaders accountable for a just and fair Voting Rights Act! Check back often for more information.
New Faces at MFSA
This week we welcome two new faces to the MFSA office!

Heather Kramer joins MFSA's staff as Administrative Coordinator. Heather is a recent graduate of Wesley Theological Seminary and will be starting works toward her MA in Pastoral Counseling at Loyola University in Columbia, MD this fall.  Heather is no stranger to MFSA - she was an intern with us from 2011-2013!

From Houston originally, she attended the University of Texas at Austin for her undergraduate degree, and maintains her membership in the Southwest Texas Conference. Heather can be reached at heather@mfsaweb.org ; she will also be responsible for any email that comes to mfsa@mfsaweb.org.

Many thanks to the 11 MFSA Chapters and one Anonymous donor who pledged to make the Administrative Coordinator position possible! You can add your support, too!

Seokchane Suh joins MFSA as an Intern. Seokchane was born and raised in Korea and attended Araullo University in The Philippines. He received a Master of Divinity and Master of Arts in Christian Education from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary in Evanston, IL.

Seokchane is currently studying in the Ethics, Peace, and Global Affairs program at American University in Washington, DC. An active member of The United Methodist Church, He is a certified candidate for ordination as a Deacon in the Northern Illinois Conference.
You Can Help One Community
The Salesian Sisters' school in Cremisan near Beit Jala, next door to Bethlehem, will lose their sunlight, their fresh air and their hope for a joyful future. Four hundred students from kindergarten to fifth grade, including students with learning disabilities, will attend a school surrounded by a six meter high wall that blocks the view, the air and the sun, while creating a prison like atmosphere. Any future expansion of the school or use of the land for educational activities will be impossible.

The sisters and their students aren't the only people whose future will be diminished. Fifty-eight families, mostly Christians, will lose their agricultural land. The last remaining area for people in Beit Jala, Bethlehem, and Beit Sahour, the three traditionally Christian villages south of Jerusalem, to be in a natural area and experience the beauty of the Holy land will be denied to the community.

You can take action! Churches for Middle East Peace is asking you to encourage the State Department to inquire about the violation of human rights taking place in Israel and Palestine. If you want to get your congregation and neighbors to sign up without going online, you can use this form. This can make a difference for one community, and set a precedence that could change lives under the shadow of occupation.
ProgressivePonderingsProgressive Ponderings
FacebookDid You Move?


HEY! Hey you! Yeah, you!

Now that we have your attention...

Late June and early July are known moving days for clergy in The United Methodist Church, so we know a lot of folks need to update their address. Or maybe you're laity and you forgot to let us know that you've moved recently. And there's always a possibility that your information has never been in our database!

MFSA sent out a direct mail piece last week. If you've not received it, but would like to be included in our database  please send an email to mfsa@mfsaweb.org and we'll update your information!

**We never sell your information and if you decide you don't want to receive direct mail from us, we can note that at a later date!
Methodist Federation for Social Action
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Washington, DC 20003
202.546.8806