JPANet October 2023 Newsletter
Each month we ask UCC advocates to help us unpack the complex justice issues that we’re working on. At this year’s General Synod, the UCC passed a resolution on digital justice, and there’s no one better to explain our call to live into this resolution than UCC Media Justice Ministry’s Cheryl Leanza.
Media Justice & Communication Rights
It is a great honor to share my thoughts with the Justice & Peace Action network this month—I work as the policy advisor for the historic United Church of Christ Media Justice Ministry and a focus this month on media justice and communications rights could not be more timely.
This summer, the UCC General Synod voted to endorse a digital justice resolution, which urges all parts of the UCC to advocate and support meaningful digital access:
It is incumbent upon us, as people of faith, to advocate for equitable access to the internet for all who experience stumbling blocks in their access to safe, reliable, quality internet services and to ensure, once they have access to the internet, that they are treated fairly online and have access to the skills and knowledge needed to make full use of those tools. Read more.
Justice In Action
Join the Movement’s “Decolonizing Antiracism” Collection Invites Exploration of Indigenous Imaginations for Our Future
Any movement toward racial justice must engage the patterns and practices of colonization upon which the United States was founded, and which continue to shape our imagination of who we are and what justice looks like. Our churches and Christianity itself have played a significant role in establishing, perpetuating, and justifying settler colonialism. So, we in the UCC also have a significant role to play in decolonizing not only our minds, bodies and spirits, but also our work for racial justice. This October and November, Join the Movement is launching a collection of stories, resources, toolkits and webinars that center Indigenous scholars, theologians, communities and activists to guide us as we all take up our roles in this ongoing work. Join this movement to deepen and decolonize our practices of antiracism!
Join the UCC Washington D.C. Team!
The United Church of Christ Washington D.C. Office is hiring two policy advocates to join the team in our advocacy work here on Capitol Hill. Should you, or someone you know, apply? Help us spread the word to find our next domestic policy advocate and international policy advocate. Find both positions listed at this link.
Government Incentives for Churches to Lower Electrical Bills and Reduce Fossil Fuel Use
Churches can reduce fossil fuel use by making the most of government incentives. Churches receive federal money for the purchase of solar panels or heat pumps. Check out the UCC’s new solar resource page which explains why almost every church would save money by going solar. Replacing your heating and air conditioning system? Register for our webinar on heat pumps.
UCC Climate Action Assembly
The UCC Council for Climate Justice has called for a Climate Action Assembly at 1 pm ET on November 1st. At this assembly gathering, we will hear proposals from Council members for action campaigns and projects for 2024. New teams and pre-existing green teams aligned with these initiatives will be formally commissioned at a second Climate Action Assembly in January of 2024. Sign-up to join the November 1st Assembly via Zoom.
Jubilee Weekend 2023
The weekend of October 14-15, faith communities across the nation will mark “Jubilee Weekend” with our UCC partner organization, Jubilee USA. The theme for the weekend is, “Protecting the Vulnerable Amidst Multiple Crises: the Road to Jubilee 2025”, which will highlight the many economic challenges we face as a global community.
Check out the liturgical and other resources here that draw attention to our shared concern for the ongoing effects of COVID-19, the debt crisis, and the need for a comprehensive, universal debt restructuring tool.
Attend the 41st Parker Lecture
The Everett C. Parker Ethics in Telecommunications Lecture was created in 1982 to recognize Parker’s pioneering work as an advocate for the public’s rights in broadcasting. Join UCC Media Justice Ministry for the 41st Annual Parker Lecture on October 24, 2023 at First Congregational UCC in Washington, DC and online.
Federal Communications Commission Chair Jessica Rosenworcel will deliver the 41st Annual Everett C. Parker Ethics in Telecommunications Lecture and Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) will be recognized with this year’s Everett C. Parker Award. Learn more and get your tickets here!
Climate Hope Cards to Be Delivered Next Week to the EPA
On October 13th, more than 7,000 petition postcards will be delivered to the EPA. Churches across the country helped make this possible. Among the delegation delivering the cards will be the 17-year-old winner of the Climate Hope Art Contest whose art appears on the front of the postcards. EPA staff will discuss with the delegation concerns about the EPA’s power plant standards as well as its Clean Trucks Plan.
UCC Honors National Coming Out Day with Online Celebration
National Coming Out Day is a celebration of LGBTQ+ liberation and the fullness and beauty of queer life.
United Church of Christ Gender & Sexuality Justice Ministries invites you to celebrate queer lives OUT LOUD on this National Coming Out Day for an inaugural Queer & Wonderfully Made Worship service, October 11th, 7-8 PM ET with musical guest Flamy Grant! Register here.
Sowing Justice: Cultivating a Just World for All in the Farm Bill
Join us for a three-part webinar series in collaboration with Franklinton Center on UCC advocacy priorities in the next Farm Bill. Farmers, policy experts, and impacted community leaders will highlight the need to advocate for economic, racial, and environmental justice for small farmers, the food insecure, and the earth. Tuesdays, November 7, 14, and 28 at 7 pm. Register here.
UCC Webinar – A Plea from the Pope
Yesterday, Pope Francis released the “second part” of his encyclical on the climate crisis and inequality. A multi-faith panel of climate leaders will reflect upon Pope’s updated plea for climate action. Even if you cannot make the webinar at its scheduled time on October 11th at 1 pm ET, still sign-up, and we will send you a link to a recording of it. Register now!
DC Action Center
Each week, the D.C. Office creates an action alert based on what is happening at that time in Congress, and offers you the opportunity to contact your legislators with just one click! You can find all the alerts here.
The Pollinator is a digital platform of the UCC for the sharing of ideas and inspiration. Its focus is the building of a faith-filled and faith-rooted movement for the care of creation
Witness for Justice
Looking for up-to-date social justice commentary? Check out Witness for Justice, a weekly editorial opinion column written by the staff of Justice and Witness Ministries.