Last year, GCCC members participated in a monthly discussion group dedicated to confronting questions of race and perspective. From that group comes the Race and Justice Ministry Team (RJMT), a coalition of five members with the goal of engaging GCCC in the fight for justice by spreading awareness, developing a constant posture of learning, and advancing action to fight for justice in our communities. The team endeavors to achieve its goals through the guidance of scripture and the Holy Spirit. One of the team’s first initiatives is the launching of the Book/Media Group, which meets the second Wednesday of each month to discuss readings, often paired with multimedia. Reach out to our team (Angela Fang, Jennie Ro, Christine Shin, Tony Xiao, and Omari James) with any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’d love to hear from you.
The GCCC Race and Justice Ministry Team is launching its Book/Media Club! The purpose of the Book/Media Club is to promote awareness and ongoing dialogue about systemic injustices in our communities and to understand our role as Christians in addressing them. For more information, or if you’re interested in joining, sign-up here!
Listen and Learn
Part of our Christian action toward the larger Black community in the US is to “listen to learn.” To help us do that, here are a few resources.
- Kelvin Walker leads the Metro District of our denomination, the Christian & Missionary Alliance. In May, he held a conversation about racial injustice that you can watch here.
- Race Literacy 101 is a class led by Steve Park, director of Little Lights in DC, one of our local partners. It is an 11-week study and discussion group that meets together weekly to learn and discuss authentically and thoughtfully on the issue of race and racism in an honest yet grace-filled environment. Sign up at their website.
- Here is another conversation to listen to, eight Black church leaders from different parts of the US talking about the death of Ahmaud Arbery, from May 8. Listen here.
- Click Here to download the script from our June 7th Lament Service.
In addition, here are some books and other media that some of our staff and leadership boards have found helpful to them (with children’s resources marked *). Also, please see our Facebook-Local page, where members of our community have been posting resources.
- “13th.” Explores the history of race and criminal justice in the US and how mass incarceration is essentially the extension of slavery even after the 13th amendment abolished it. Helped me to understand how systems are set up intentionally to oppress. (Jennie Ro)
- “The 1619 Project.” This multi-media web project provides a different historical perspective regarding slavery and how it impacts our society today. (Melissa Ho)
- Michelle Alexander, The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness. Helpful book on the development of mass incarceration in our country. (Julie Tsui)
- Campaign Zero. This campaign’s mission is about informing folks about mechanisms of injustice, specifically created by police institutions; at the same time, it illuminates many solutions on how to combat them. This helped me by providing many avenues to tackle corrupt systems in place. (Isaias Dawit)
- *Marianne Celano, Something Happened in Our Town. This book (read aloud here) is about seeing both sides of racism, through the eyes of children. This reading is a straight shot to starting needed dialogues; a friend of mine has used it to talk to her young students. (Isaias Dawit)
- Ta-Nahisi Coates, Between the World and Me. This book is a personal essay about race and the experience of a “Black body” in America, starting from Coates’s growing up in Baltimore and his going to college at Howard in DC. Honest and searching, it’s beautiful writing, and it gave me a vivid picture of his experience as a Black person in this country. (Carl Park)
- Michael Emerson and Christian Smith, Divided by Faith: Evangelical Religion and the Problem of Race in America. Provides good historical overview of how racial divides have been perpetuated by churches and how/why Black and White Christians view social issues/remedies to racial inequality differently. (Julie Tsui)
- “Grace, Justice, and Mercy: An Evening with Bryan Stevenson and Rev. Tim Keller.” This hour-long video is part of a series put on by the Grace and Race ministry of Redeemer Presbyterian Church (NY). Tim preaches on biblical justice; Bryan (author of Just Mercy) provides practical ways to change your worldview and gives his testimony relating to some of what he writes in his book (and movie). (Phil Oh)
- “Let it Fall: Los Angeles 1982-1992.” This documentary shows the various factors and the complexity of not only our systems, but also our human decision making. (Melissa Ho)
- Eric Mason, “Woke Church.” This is a talk about how all injustice is a gospel issue; it verbalized what we must care about as Christians. This talk helped me understand Jesus’ heart to stop injustice. (Isaias Dawit)
- Soong-Chan Rah, Prophetic Lament: A Call for Justice in Troubled Times. This book is part of a series whose aim “is to have one finger in the ancient Scriptures, another in the daily newspaper and another touching the heart, all the while pointing to Jesus Christ.” This was helpful to learn more deeply the role of lament as a form of protest to injustice. (Melissa Ho)
- *Mildred Taylor, Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry. I read this book in grade school, and it left a lasting impression on me. It is told from the perspective of a child. I plan to re-read this with my 7-year-old and discuss it as we go along. It was also one of the resources mentioned on the CMA Panel! (Joy Lee)