in Blackhawk Presbytery
People around the Presbytery
are longing to revitalize their congregations as well as looking for ways to address systemic poverty and structural racism.

The Matthew 25 initiative seeks to nurture and resource your efforts.

All Church Leaders are
Invited to Join Us for
Roundtable Discussions
1st and 3rd Thursdays:

November 5 at 2 pm and 7 pm
Topic: Congregational Vitality

November 19 at 2 pm and 7 pm
Topic: Systemic Poverty

December 5 at 2 pm and 7 pm
Topic: Structural Racism

1 hour each, on Zoom

Drop in when you can!

While the zoom invitation for each 2 pm and each 7 pm event will not change, please join our group list to insure you receive the latest information and reminders.
New Web Page!

Have you visited the new Matthew 25 page on the Blackhawk Presbytery website? We will try not to duplicate too much of the information easily available on the PC(USA) Matthew 25 pages. Instead, this is the place to share upcoming seminar and event information and spotlight stories from our own Presbytery. Visit the page often and submit content for inclusion.
October 28 Online Event: Eradicating Systemic Poverty: Global Issues

Where in your church can you take action to address systemic poverty on a global level? The next online Matthew 25 event (Presbyterian Mission Agency-sponsored, scheduled for October 28 at 1:00 p.m. CDT, will lift up how to engage existing partners for this work and where potential partnerships might exist. This event will follow the model of the previous Matthew 25 events with facilitated dialogue, guest speakers, and the sharing of resources. Mark your calendars today and register here. 
Dismantling Structural Racism: Where Do We Begin?

The summer of peaceful protests with their renewed call to fight against racism in all forms has many church members wondering what we, as individuals or as a congregation, can do? Just because our communities and congregations may be very "white" does not mean we can easily dismiss these calls. Joining the Matthew 25 program specifically to focus on anti-racism is a great way to start. In our conversations so far, the top four suggestions for initial steps seem to point to:

  1. Bible Study - the Matthew 25 bible study is suitable for group or individual study and addresses all three facets of the Matthew 25 initiative. The Facing Racism study is another option.
  2. Book Study - Anxious to Talk About It: Helping White Christians Talk Faithfully about Racism by Carolyn B. Helsel (a PCUSA Minister) has been recommended as a good place to start.
  3. Group Study: Work through the "21-Day Racial Justice Challenge" - for use by individuals, small groups or an entire church.
  4. Movie + discussions. Suggested movies: "Just Mercy", "13th", “Unspoken: America’s Native American Boarding Schools” , "Best of Enemies", "The Hate U Give" or consult and choose from any number of lists.

Remember, the important thing is to start.
Have You Witnessed Injustice?

Sometimes we get discouraged and think there is little we can do. This story from Macomb, Illinois started with a community grappling with charges of racism in it's treatment of the former president of WIU. By joining forces with local officials, a leader in the First Presbyterian Church planned and executed community workshops and then led the effort to fund body-cameras for the local police department. Sarah Shoper-Salazar and Macomb First Pres. discovered that community involvement can revitalize congregations and engaged congregations can revitalize communities.
All are encouraged to embrace the commitment
to Matthew 25 in your context:
clergy, mission committee members, session members....
Please Share!