Several members from the Trinity congregation have been meeting by zoom to begin necessary conversations about our differences and to create a vision about justice and compassion and healing that will promote common ground and examine systemic inequality and racism. In honor and in celebration of Black History Month, we suggest reading. Feel free to contact anyone on the coalition with comments or questions or further reading suggestions. We begin with the following recommendations.

Bryan Stevenson is a professor of law at New York University, as well as a gifted spokesperson. Foremost, he is a defender of justice and mercy, speaking for those without a voice. His moving narrative, Just Mercy, reveals an inspirational account and argument for compassion in the pursuit of justice. "Bryan Stevenson founded the Equal Justice Initiative, a legal practice dedicated to defending those most desperate and in need: the poor, the wrongly condemned, and women and children trapped in the farthest reaches of our criminal justice system".

The Vanishing Half, by Brit Bennett, is a wonderful historical novel about twin sisters who grew up in a poor, rural Louisiana town. The town, founded by the twins Great Grandfather, required that all inhabitants be very light skinned Negroes. The sisters choose very different paths.. Stella passing and living life as a white woman of affluence, Desiree returning to live in their hometown. Every single character in the book has many layers. Many social issues are addressed from different perspectives... racism, transgender issues, social status, as well as the core issues of happiness and acceptance. As you follow the journey of the characters through several decades, you will find yourself examining your own feelings on these important issues.

And from Abby Reed comes the following recommendations: So You Want To Talk About Race, by Ijeoma Oluo who implores us to grasp the concept of change as it relates to racism. In the author's narrative, she suggests that for change to happen, we all will have to work at dismantling the systemic structures that perpetuate racism.

Happy reading,
Lin Wierwille, Abby Reed, Jennifer Faust, Emily Howard, Daniel Kirk, Kevan Franklin
"ACT": Anti-Racist Coalition at Trinity