Coming September 1
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What’s a Playlist?
A Playlist is a set of activities exploring a topic. The activities might include reading an article or scripture, listening to a podcast or sermon, watching a video or movie clip. Each month we’ll post three Playlists designed for Children, Youth, and Adults. All of us will explore the same topic, but the Playlists will be designed for each age group. You can work your way through the Playlists at your own pace throughout the month.
Remember you can always share your thoughts in the comment section at the bottom of this page.
Denise McClellan, Director of Adult Ministries
The theme for our September Playlist is Justice. The struggle for justice can take many roads. Advocating for the homeless. Reforming immigration policies. Working for funding for education. Assisting seniors. The focus of the September Adult Playlist is social justice. It’s been in the news this summer, so let’s take a deeper dive into it with our eyes of faith.
Read the prayer below. Return to it throughout the month. Let it be a guide for you as you work your way through the September Playlist.
Ever present God, you called us to be in relationship with one another and promised to dwell wherever two or three are gathered. In our community, we are many different people; we come from many different places, have many different cultures. Open our hearts that we may be bold in finding the riches of inclusion and the treasures of diversity among us. We pray in faith.
Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.
Below you’ll find some thoughts from Pastor Andrea. As you explore justice through the September Playlist, think about how you can live justly and demonstrate justice to others.
From Pastor Andrea:
I’m thinking about justice as “social justice” which we enact by living out our faith. So it is God’s justice of defending and loving the needy that by our faith enacted we make real in the world.
We do this by loving our neighbors as ourselves and caring about people around us, especially the needy, vulnerable, poor, and powerless. It is making sure all people are treated equally and righting inequalities in our world. It’s about making a difference where we can by living out our faith.
When we do this, we show the nature of God shown to us by Jesus which is love and peace. It’s about how we treat each other and how we live as people of faith sharing God’s love. It can be shown as honesty, equity, generosity in every day dealings, as well. To try to live as Jesus lived, reaching out to those different from us, including all people to love, serve, and care for as well as giving our time and resources and engaging against unfair practices in our society.
I think of Mr. Rogers as being a good neighbor and being loving.
Pastor Andrea looks to the following verses as some key teachings about justice. Spend some time reading and meditating on these passages. As you work your way through the list, read the verses. Close your eyes and meditate on what words or ideas stand out to you. Read the verses again. Close your eyes and meditate on where God is guiding you.
Isaiah 61:1-2 & Luke 4:16-21
We’ve seen videos from The Bible Project in our Worship Services at Desert Cross. The following video teaches us about Biblical justice. Click the link below to watch it.
Desert Cross is part of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. What does our church leadership say about justice? Click the link below to learn how we’re called to strive for justice and peace.
Does music help you experience God’s message in a special way? Click the link below to listen to a hymn with a message on justice.
Representative John Lewis died in July. He was a beautiful, peaceful, forgiving soul. His work for justice and voting rights in Congress and as a Civil Rights Leader helped change our society. Click the link below to watch his conversation with Bryan Stevenson, founder of the Equal Justice Initiative. Bryan Stevenson’s work is featured in the film Just Mercy. Desert Cross hosted a discussion of the film via Zoom a couple of months ago. Part of the conversation includes how faith guides their work.
Selma is a movie that portrays the fight for voting rights. “Glory” is the theme song from the film written by Common and John Legend. Click the link below to watch the music video with clips from the film.
How are you being called to respond? How can you work for justice in our world? Nita Mosby Tyler is an Equity Advocate. In the following video, she talks about how the fight for justice needs unlikely allies. Click the link below to hear her story. Her message about a “consciousness of grace” is interesting.
The Grand Canyon Synod is hosting Open Conversations on Race via Zoom. The GCS website describes the conversations as “a safe and thoughtful space where you and others in the synod can wrestle with questions and talk with each other.” Upcoming dates are September 8, October 13, and November 10, 6:30-8:00 p.m. Click the link below and look for the sign up information by date on the News & Events Calendar page.
Lutheran Advocacy Ministry Arizona
Check out Lutheran Advocacy Ministry Arizona by clicking the link below to visit their website. Below you’ll find some information about the group from the website.
LAMA joins with the most vulnerable of our society to voice our common needs in the public square, activating our faith in love.
The purpose of LAMA is to advocate for justice in the areas of hunger, poverty, and care of God’s creation by speaking with and for those who have little or no political power. LAMA will work with congregations in Arizona — ELCA Lutherans and others — to create and use networks for advocacy on these issues.