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Race

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Bringing Forth Fruit Worthy of Repentence

We noticed her standing just inside the front entrance looking up. While she was waiting to load her bus with the summer camp kids, she had stepped into the church foyer and saw the land acknowledgement: The Community Christian Reformed Church of Meadowvale is located on the Treaty Lands and Traditional Territories of the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation.

Finding the We: God’s Grace can Transform Environmental Racism

“It has been 1,606 days since Flint has had clean water,” declared Flint Rising director Nayyirah Shiriff after introducing herself to me and a group of about 30 other “Healing Waters” retreat participants in the last days of summer 2018 at the Colombiere retreat center in Clarkston, Michigan. Nayyirah’s statement brought a silent wave of grief over the room.

What the Eyes Don't See

Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.

                    -Dr. Seuss, The Lorax

Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha, the doctor who brought attention to the impact that Flint’s water was having on children, opens her book with these lines from Dr. Seuss.

Polluted Lungs, Polluted Minds

This summer, I had the opportunity to participate in a learning tour with the Canadian Aboriginal Ministry Committee, World Renew, and the CRC Office of Race Relations focusing on places of racism, resistance, resilience, and reconciliation within urban Indigenous communities in southwestern Ontario. One of the places we visited was Aamjiwnaang First Nation, located on the St. Clair River, within the Sarnia city limits.

Building Equity at Sunday School

Kids can be pretty focused on fairness. "Elijah got more cake than me!" "Sarah isn't sharing the swing with me!" If you work or live with kids, these might be common refrains in your life!

The Idolatry of White Supremacy

My wife and I were ready for our new adventure as a future clergy couple in New Jersey. In 1993, Sharon and I, along with our Persian cat Kuzak, stuffed our yellow Pontiac Sunbird to begin our ministry at Northside Chapel Community Christian Reformed Church in Paterson, New Jersey. My co-pastor, the late Rev. Stan Vander Klay, found a spacious apartment for us in neighboring Clifton.

Confronting My Silence

I wish I had taken a vow of silence. But I haven’t. Far from any overtly noble rationale, I simply went quiet. For the past 11 months, I’ve hardly done any writing, I’ve only read two books, and I’ve been abnormally disengaged from the urgent crises and conversations of the past year. And I don’t have a good justification for doing so.

More recently – and more substantively – however, I’ve started to recognize three different themes that have impacted my lack of writing this past year.

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Summer Justice Reads - CRC Staff Picks

Looking for summer beach reads? Here's what some Christian Reformed justice staff are reading this summer. 

Barracoon: The Story of the Last “Black Cargo - Zora Neale Hurston

Viviana Cornejo

Passing the Mic at the Festival of Faith and Writing

When I signed up to attend Calvin College's Festival of Faith & Writing, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I was hoping for some inspiration, some words of encouragement, some insightful tips to perhaps get me through my ongoing battles with writer’s block.

Instead I left convicted and with rearranged priorities. And I’m thankful for it.

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Know Your History, Beloved

I am from Madagascar.

Like the movie? Usually the response of anyone aged 25 and under.

I’ve never met anyone from Madagascar. From those 25 and over.

The island of Madagascar broke off from the continent of Africa eons ago, allowing the flora and fauna present to evolve to such a degree that the biodiversity you find on that glorious island you will find nowhere else in the world.

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