The Common Good
September-October 1997

Resources for Study and Action

by Sandy Maben | September-October 1997

CHALLENGING RACISM

CHALLENGING RACISM

One of the four major efforts of the Call to Renewal network is the dismantling of racism. Here are several resources to help toward that goal.

Reconcilers Fellowship in Jackson, Mississippi, has opened the Perkins Training Center. Workshops at PTC focus on racial reconciliation, community rebuilding, and concern for the poor by bringing people of different races together in unprecedented ways. Reconcilers also offers a quarterly magazine of the same name, which is free upon request. Contact them at P.O. Box 32, Jackson, MS 39205; (601) 354-1563; or e-mail reconcile1@ aol.com.

Walk Together Children is a new ecumenical resource by Baptist Peace Fellowship for local congregations who want to form partnerships across racial lines within their communities. The 76-page guide has lots of how-to advice and more than a dozen stories on current partnerships. The cost is $6.95 plus $2 postage. Order from BPF at Box 280, Lake Junaluska, NC 28745; (704) 456-1881; or e-mail bpfna@ primeline.com.

Ending Racism—Working for a Racism Free 21st Century is a video produced by Crossroads Ministry, an interfaith ministry for racial justice. The video and companion discussion guide can be used by civic, educational, religious, and business groups to begin to understand racism’s impact on their communities and institutions. Crossroads also provides training to multiracial teams for facilitating discussion on this topic. Order for $30 plus $5 shipping from Crossroads Ministry, 425 S. Central Park Ave., Chicago, IL 60624; (312) 638-0166; or e-mail xroads@igc.apc.org.

REFUGEES IN PERIL

At least 18 countries, including the United States, forcibly expelled refugees or insufficiently screened asylum seekers in 1996. This finding is in the 1997 World Refugee Survey, an assessment of conditions affecting refugees, asylum seekers, and internally displaced people. Published annually by the U.S. Committee for Refugees, the 1997 survey includes 120 detailed country reports, 12 statistical tables, and essays on deteriorating asylum standards. The price of $19 includes postage. Order from USCR, 1717 Massachusetts Ave. NW, Suite 701, Washington, DC 20036; (202) 347-3507; or e-mail Raci.Say@irsa-uscr.org to request a copy of their publications brochure.

Churches around the world are commemorating 1997 as the Ecumenical Year of Churches in Solidarity With Uprooted People. The Church World Service Immigration and Refugee Program has compiled a resource packet to help congregations get involved. It contains materials from many countries, including liturgy and resource kits from the National Council of Churches in Australia. The price is $3 each for less than 10, $2 each for 10 or more. Order from CWS/IRP at 475 Riverside Dr., Room 658, New York, NY 10115-0050; (212) 870-3153; or e-mail jane@ncccusa.org for information on other available resources.

MUMIA ABU-JAMAL

The American Bar Association has called for a moratorium on capital punishment because it is currently administered in an arbitrary, racist, and unfair manner. One prisoner on death row is Mumia Abu-Jamal, convicted in 1982 for the murder of a Philadelphia police officer in a trial judged by several human rights groups to have been, at best, unfair. The Bruderhof communities have recorded a thought-provoking interview with Abu-Jamal, "A Conversation on Death Row," available for $20. Order from Plough Publishing at 1-800-521-8011.

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