In one of his most recent blogs, John Pavlovitz, a Raleigh-based pastor and writer, wrote:
“Dear 2017, You’ve been one terrible decade. When midnight arrives on December 31st it won’t be a millisecond too soon, though when it does—it will feel less like celebration and more like acknowledging survival.”
John’s right, of course.
This past year has been a hard and dark one for many of us—a year of attempts to ban the immigration of Muslims, of threats to deport hundreds of thousands of young “dreamers” who came to the United States as children, of revelations of sexual harassment and abuse, of horrific mass shootings and the even more horrific failure to adopt common sense gun safety laws, of racists marching through the streets with torches and Confederate flags, of continued and increased division, partisanship, and extremist policies that undermine health care and benefit the wealthy and powerful at the expense of the middle class, the poor, the vulnerable, the marginalized, and the oppressed.
But, John continues, this past year has also been a year in which people of good will have pushed back against the worst things that the past year brought, resisting bigotry and wall-building and fear-mongering and political plundering, fighting to live as normally as we could in unfathomably abnormal times, creating and dreaming and loving and doing what we could to redeem the year as often as we were able.
And, for Unitarian Universalists here in North Carolina, 2017 was also the year in which the Unitarian Universalist Justice Ministry of North Carolina was “reborn.”
In just a few short months, we’ve begun the work of re-creating UUJMNC as a better-organized, adequately-funded, more visible, and more effective statewide UU justice ministry that will “give life the shape of justice.” We’ve incorporated UUJMNC as an independent, nonprofit, nonpartisan, faith-based justice organization, been recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as a section 501c3 charitable organization (which means that your contributions to UUJMNC are tax-deductible), built a new and improved web site, opened a bank account with the Self-Help Credit Union of Durham, recruited an initial Board of Directors, and received a $12,000 grant for “start up” expenses from the UUA’s Fund for UU Social Responsibility.
We’re off to a great start!
And we have big plans for 2018, including a gathering of UUs after the HKonJ Moral March on Raleigh on February 10th, our first “Justice on Jones Street” day of advocacy at the North Carolina General Assembly in May, our first “Forward Together” conference this fall, and more.
But we need your help to “give life the shape of justice” in 2018!
So please, make one of your New Year’s resolutions to connect with UUJMNC, to tell your friends about UUJMNC, to get involved with UUJMNC, to support UUJMNC, and to help UUJMNC give life the shape of justice by showing up, speaking out, and taking action.