When you visit our UUFP website, you’ll see on the homepage (and other pages of the website, as well), the statement that “The UUFP commits to becoming an Anti-racist Congregation.” Part of that commitment entails taking time to learn more and indeed to train ourselves to think differently and act differently. We are very fortunate to have as a resource, Ibram X. Kendi’s book, How to Be an Antiracist. In this work, Kendi undergoes a careful examination of systemic racism and provides guidelines for how to resist this ingrained system in order to create a new anti-racist system. Each chapter builds on the last. In every chapter, Kendi also shares with us his personal experiences. These stories from his life are very compelling and bring the larger points he is making to life. By sharing deeply, Kendi is also modeling how we can and should examine our own lives as well. He demonstrates how this is an important first step in becoming an Anti-racist.
The Racial Justice Team invites you to join us this spring on the second-of-the-month Beloved Community Wednesdays for a discussion and contemplation of Kendi’s How to Be an Anti-racist. We will be taking this book slowly. Each session will be covering just one chapter, so we will not finish the book this church year. (In September, we will take the book up again for more discussion and inner contemplation. You are welcome to rejoin the How to Be an Anti-racist sessions in the fall as well.)
The format for approaching the text will vary. Sometimes we will be openly discussing the work, and sometimes we will be sharing our personal experiences with each other using compassionate listening. Compassionate listening is a Buddhist practice. You may be familiar with it if you have participated in a Fellowship Circle. When we share with each other using compassionate listening, we listen without responding and allow a quiet moment before someone else shares.
The Beloved Community Wednesday potluck will be at 6:15 p.m. and discussion will start at 7:00 p.m. Our “How to Be an Anti-racist” gathering for this church year will have sessions: May 10 and June 14. You can find the books and the sign-up sheet in the library area outside the sanctuary. The books are available to purchase for $10 or borrow for free. For our first session, on April 12, please read the Introduction. For our May 10 session, we will focus on chapter one, and June 14, we will focus on chapter two. Hope to see you there! Walk-ins are welcome also! For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org. (Please put How to Be an Anti-racist in the subject line.)