November 15, 2016
It has been a wild ride and now we are here. There’s no worry on this day in November that the work of the NC Council of Churches will be finished anytime soon. If anything, our job just became nearly as important as the job of our predecessors in 1935 when they set out to right the wrongs of racial inequity – a wrong we continue to champion while adding to our resume a long list of human rights initiatives and care of creation imperatives. If you want to see examples of the arc of the moral universe bending toward justice, look here.
For starters, it will be crucial for us to hold the rudder of justice steady in the headwinds that are sure to come. I believe we should be prepared for constrictions on health care coverage and access to affordable health care, increased discrimination against LGBTQ citizens, antagonism towards immigrants and Muslims, and ongoing wage depreciation that will most severely impact the working poor. The NC Council of Churches has faced these issues – and others like them – before. We are veterans at standing against injustice.
Next, in a separate but related category, we must confess that our nation still harbors deep, festering, racial enmity. Over the past few years we have named some of the systemic racial injustice manifested in housing, education, labor, and criminal justice. The recent [re]discovery during this presidential campaign offers a different realization about we, the people. It seems we, the people, do not value one another at the same level that God values each of us. As you know, the Council was birthed in the crucible of racial inequality. We are veterans at naming this truth.
Beyond our vigilance on behalf of marginalized people, we must stand on the watchtower continually by day and throughout the night safeguarding the environment. Our work will continue to claim the moral imperative of caring for creation as responsible stewards of God’s great gift and the ethical imperative of opposing climate change that impacts the most vulnerable of God’s creatures. We are veterans at vigilant surveillance.
In partnership with you and the eighteen denominational bodies that comprise the NC Council of Churches, we will continue to move with the grain of the universe toward the completion that is ours in God’s good time. Your financial support is vital to how we move forward, so we thank you for all you do to make this work possible.
Courage for the facing of these days,
Jennifer E. Copeland, Executive Director
- Critical Issues Seminar: daylong series of workshops addressing racial inequity along with a roundtable discussion featuring Tim Tyson, Eboni Turman Marshall, and Nelson Johnson.
- Stand Up Sabbath: statewide weekend of focused education about current gun laws and commemoration of the attack on Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC.
- Keeping Sacred Spaces Sacred: partnership with Americans United for the Separation of Church and State to conduct statewide workshops empowering churches to speak about prophetic justice while respecting the need to be bi-partisan.
- Payday Lending Faith Coalition: in cooperation with the Center for Responsible Lending, opposed the return of payday, vehicle title, and high-cost installment loans to NC.
- Immigration and Farmworker:
- Held the Faith and Immigration Summit offering a full day of workshops focused on potential effects of the election on immigrants, refugees, and farmworkers.
- Organized an interfaith prayer vigil and community potluck lifting up refugees in the wake of Gov. McCrory’s statement not to settle Syrian refugees in NC.
- Led a statewide initiative to enroll more Latinos in the ACA.
- Partners in Health and Wholeness:
- Launched a new website with fresh look and additional features.
- Hired two additional regional coordinators, bringing the total to four and giving us statewide presence.
- Evaluated and improved the current certification and mini-grant program.
- Interfaith Power and Light:
- Organized the Second Annual Statewide “Faith Voices for Clean Energy” Advocacy Day at the NC General Assembly.
- Hosted world-renowned climate scientist Dr. Katharine Hayhoe at 24 partnership events across the state.
- Engaged 100-plus congregations in Faith Climate Action Week activities in honor of Earth Day.
- Developed a resolution for Governing Board to oppose offshore drilling in the mid-Atlantic, contributing the President’s decision to halt such drilling.
- Preach Love, December 2-4:
Calling on faith leaders across North Carolina to shape their worship services for the first weekend in December around the theme “Love One Another.”
- Beyond Gun Violence, January 27-29, 2017:
A weekend of events in Chapel Hill, including a daylong workshop on Saturday, geared toward next steps in ending this nation’s gun violence epidemic.
Please click here if you’d like to donate online. Or your gifts are always welcome to: NCCC, 27 HORNE St., Raleigh, 27607. The NC Council of Churches is a 501(c)(3) organization. Contributions are tax-deductible to the full extent of the law.
You can also support the Council through AmazonSmile.