Every Monday in February, an email will go out to the congregation with resources and links to a particular category/theme related to Racial Justice.

We present this month of challenges as only one of many steps on a long journey to raise our own Awareness, build Relationships and grow in our Commitment as a Church to dismantling the sin of racism and hastening the day when justice will truly be equal for everyone.

We hope you will interact with the resources presented each day, or as your schedule allows.

Monday, February 1, 2021
Poetry, Prose, and Essays
Maya Angelou was a poet, author, and civil rights, activist. One of her most celebrated poems is "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings." Please click this link to read her short bio and her extraordinary poem she wrote in 1969.

Tuesday, February 2, 2021 
History We Didn't Learn in School
During the Great Depression, a New Deal program created color-coded maps of every metropolitan area in the country that were designed to tell banks where it was safe to insure mortgages. Neighborhoods with minority residents were marked in red — hence "redlining” — and considered high-risk for mortgage lenders. These neighborhoods were deemed too risky to insure and were ineligible for federally backed mortgages. Generations of Black families were barred from homeownership, a major source of wealth building in America. Please click this link to read more about the history of how Black families were barred from becoming homeowners.

Wednesday, February 3, 2021
Family, Kids, and Youth
Reading for Racial Justice – Focus on Fiction with non-white protagonists.
“Being intentional about the books we choose to read with our children can help them identify with all kinds of people and help counteract the damaging message that whiteness is normative.” - Lindley Traynor, Director of Children and Family Ministry.

Click here to read Lindley’s message about the importance of reading with and for our children and how to develop our home libraries with a focus on diversity.

Click here for this week’s recommended titles. All choices center on Black characters and almost all are the work of Black authors and illustrators.  

Youth bring a powerful voice to Racial Justice activism.  
Click below for a weekly link to an article about teens working for racial justice. 
These stories will also be shared by Youth Director, Scott McElhenie, at the Tower youth gatherings this month. Please click this link to access the article.

Thursday, February 4, 2021
Today's Leading African American Voices
John Lewis was an American politician, statesman, and civil right activist who served in the House of Representatives for more than 30 years until the time of his death last summer.  Please click here to read more about this outstanding statesman, John Lewis.

Friday, February 5, 2021
Recent Accounts of Racial Inequities
We have heard much about the unequal treatment of Blacks by the police. Here is former Chief of Police and Deputy Mayor of Detroit Isaiah McKinnon's story of being stopped by his own officer.

Please click here to read this moving story of the racism experienced by former Detroit Chief of Police, Isaiah McKennon.

The BookStall in Winnetka is hosting a forum on racial equality in America on Tuesday, February 09 from 6:30-7:30 pm. The discussion will use John Meacham's book "His Truth is Marching On: The Life of John Lewis," as its starting point, but having read the book is not a requirement for participation in the evening's program. The ZOOM event is free, and registration is required. Email events@thebookstall.com to sign up.

Saturday, February 6, 2021
Call to Action
Support Black Communities by ordering a carry-out meal for your family from a Black-owned restaurant in the area. Supporting Black businesses also means supporting Black communities, as they are usually more than just places that offer goods and services. They are community spaces for meeting and connection. They are cultural hubs and platforms for local artists. They provide programs and resources that the community needs. Especially given these multifunctional roles, strengthening Black businesses helps strengthen our communities. 

Here is a list of restaurants to check out:
Soul and Smoke, 1601 Payne Street, Evanston
Jennifer's Edibles Restaurant, 1623 Simpson, Evanston
Da Jerk Pit, 2430 Main Street, Evanston
Good to Go Jamaican Cuisine, 711 Howard Street, Evanston
Harold's Chicken, 337 Howard Street, Evanston
Hecky's Barbeque, 1902 Green Bay Road, Evanston
Kingston Grill, 1164 Dodge Avenue, Evanston
Taste of Jamaica, 741 Howard Street, Evanston

Sunday, February 7, 2021
Grounded in The Word
The Bible was central to the thought, rhetoric, and development of the Civil Rights Movement….Read more in this essay, “Closer Look: The Bible and Civil Rights,” by Kevin L. Smith from the January 18, 2012 issue of The Christian Century.
Please click this link to access the Christian Century article.