Archive for January, 2015


1 Comment » Written on January 19th, 2015     
Filed under: Testimonies and Stories


Pastor Catherine Gilliard co-pastors New Life Covenant Church in Atlanta, Georgia.


selma movieselmatomontgomerymarch

I recently went to see the movie Selma and it is a must see! I find it particularly timely in how it reminds us that the issues that were being confronted over 50 years ago have ignited many of the non-violent protests that are going on today. The injustices that were being addressed in the film are intricately woven into every fabric of society. So I wondered, as I watched the Selma movie, how an African American woman film director did so little to highlight the contributions of women foot soldiers in the Selma movement. Diane Nash is mentioned but in scene after scene she is shown listening to the debate. Her leadership is ignored and silenced and with it another opportunity for a new generation of women to witness how women in our past have risen to give leadership in how we fight the injustices that need our voices.

Our church is going to go and see this movie together and it will add to the discussion we are having in one of our current Wednesday evening offerings on ‘How Faith Shapes Social Justice Movements’ and to our larger discussion about what a justice movement is really about. Activists in justice ministries understand our mission is not centered on acts of compassion or the extension of mercy, which are all embedded within justice ministry. Our mission in justice ministries is about dismantling praxis and systems that deny people access to the resources that allow them to live meaningful lives that give witness to the faithfulness of God. Any movement that is not Christ centered and does not force us to rely on the Holy Spirit’s power and direction is already doomed to mischaracterization and our marginalization of the other. Continue Reading »

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Only Together – Are We FREE!

1 Comment » Written on January 13th, 2015     
Filed under: Testimonies and Stories

Mary Putera is currently serving as the interim pastor for Sunset Covenant Church in Beaverton Oregon. Mary has served in the ECC since 2001 as a pastor, pastoral consultant, facilitator of the I2RR and Sankofa journey and as a board member of ACCW and Women’s Ministries. Mary is currently working to complete her PhD in the Theology of Beauty and Community Art practice for social transformation.

Sanctification has more to do with reconciliation and communion than simply advancing to a higher level. Sanctification in cosmic terms, means the coming together of heaven and earth… and it is a work of remarkable beauty… it is a beauty that comes out of a work that knows of struggle and suffering but also peace and joy.                                                                                                                    Alejandro Garcia Rivera

Are not human beings a very place where heaven and earth come together? Are we all not made of the dust of the earth,enlivened by the very breath of God? Does not psalm 139 attest that All are God’s handy-work? And dear God knows of the struggle and suffering involved in reconciling us into communion.

How long I wonder, will God weep over gender lines that divide us, even though Jesus’ blood was spilled for all of us, and the Holy Spirit gifts men and women equally? And then Hope returns in the memory of moments lived gender bias free. Continue Reading »

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