Social Justice Group Report

From Michael Glenn:
Here’s a report from yesterday’s meeting of people involved in our social justice work.

We decided to change how to organize the social justice work. Moving forward into 2017-2018, we’re going to de-centralize how we take on and carry out these activities, a model many other churches are using. In today’s world social justice work takes many forms, and different members of a church resonate to different issues. Rather, then, than attempt to focus everyone’s energy on one or two main themes, creating a fairly structured year’s program, we’re encouraging people to take up the issues they care most deeply about. If someone in the church wants to work, say, on issues of climate change, they could chart a course and invite others to join them. At the same time, we will set up some main sub-groups, each with their own leaders or “contact persons.”

· Carolyn Cronin will be the general UUCM contact person for social justice issues. If you hear of an event or action that people should know about, let her know. We’ll try to inform folks who want to be informed about “what’s going on,” without barraging those who don’t, with timely notifications on the Discussions list. Over the next six months, Carolyn will also conduct a survey of church members’ attitudes around social justice issues.

· Susan Jhirad and Ilene Lerner will be contact people for Safe Medford and immigrant-related issues.

· David Concepcion, Jenn Stiles and Carolyn Cronin will be contact people for issues of racial justice.

· Ben Marder will develop a page on our website (coordinating with Melissa R.), listing ongoing and recommended social justice activities.

· The social justice book groups which proved so popular this year will continue. Margery Gans, Michael Glenn and Jenn Stiles will plan next year’s reading list, expanding it to include books on theology and social justice, biographies, and fiction, as well as books on history and policy. The two different available meeting times (SUN afternoon and MON evening) will continue as well. People will be able to join the existing groups in the fall, and/or shift groups as fits their schedule.

· In conjunction with Rev. Marta and the Worship Committee, we’ll continue to offer social justice themed Sunday services.

· And we’ll continue to work closely, cooperatively, with other nearby UU churches as well as with local groups.

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