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Social Justice and Outreach

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     Together Baton Rouge had its second meeting to launch a campaign called “We the people”. We the people is hopefully a more effective way for community participation. The next monthly meeting will be our first evening meeting, March 8th, 6:30 pm, at the University Presbyterian Church, 3240 Dalrymple Dr.  

   For those of you that sent in the letters in opposition to the open burn of hazardous chemicals in Colfax, Louisiana, the company, ironically named “Clean Harbors” has withdrawn its application for a permit. They also said they would not do open burns in Louisiana. The regular legislative session starts March 14th.

     The Reproductive Justice movement has expanded the pro-choice movement from a focus on abortion issues that marginalizes poor women and women of color to encompass a much broader scope of women's reproductive rights. Reproductive justice attempts to move women's reproductive rights past a legal and political debate to incorporate the economic, social and health factors that impact women's reproductive choices and decision-making ability. The reproductive justice movement, in its efforts to illuminate these issues, challenges the right to privacy framework established by Roe v. Wade that was predicated on the notion of choice in reproductive decision-making, and in effect turns the focus of reproductive decision-making away from one centered on civil rights toward that of human rights. Please see sign up sheet at the social justice table between services for the reproductive justice workshop to be held in April. It will be facilitated by Holley G. Haymaker and Clyde Johnson. For more information email Holley at hgalland@aol.com  

    The cash offering this month will be: Interfaith Federation - The mission of the Interfaith Federation of Greater Baton Rouge is to pursue unity, justice, and peace through interfaith cooperation. 3112 Convention Street Baton Rouge, LA 70806 

      Do you currently shop on Amazon? If so, we ask that you consider making those purchases through AmazonSmile? AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support the church every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at https://smile.amazon.com/ch/72-0687743, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to the church. The process is simple. Just click on the above link or type it directly into your web browser and begin making purchases.                 Bobby Thompson, Director of Social Justice    March 1, 2016

     The Interfaith Federation of Greater Baton Rouge will present the 26th Annual Sounds of CommUNITY Concert on Sunday, April 10, at 4pm at Greater New Guide Baptist Church, located at 3445 Fairfields Avenue. The concert will feature HERITAGE, a local choral organization devoted to the preservation of the Negro spiritual, performing spirituals based on reflections by Dr. Howard Thurman.  Diverse music will also be performed by choirs from several local faith communities.  The late Dr. Howard Thurman was an influential African American author, philosopher, theologian, educator and civil rights leader who was dedicated to world peace and inter-racial understanding.  Following the concert, the Interfaith Federation will host a 3-week series based on his writings to be held at various locations throughout the city. The locations will be announced in the April newsletter and weekend announcements in April.   

    More than 25 members of our church have signed up for discussions of  Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption, the New York Times best-seller and winner of numerous book awards by Bryan Stevenson, chosen as the UU "Common Read" for 2015-2016.   Our members will join members of other Unitarian Universalist congregations around the country in reading and discussing Stevenson's compelling book on the injustices surrounding prison incarceration.  Stevenson has dedicated his life and career as a lawyer to freeing persons wrongly condemned to death row and to over-turning sentences of juveniles condemned to life sentences and death in prison.  Discussions are scheduled Mondays February 29, March 7, 14, and 21 at 6:30pm in the church office, and will be led by Nathan Ryan and Becky Cureau. Books are available at the Book Table for $15. 

Becky Cureau,  Outreach Director, March 1, 2016