Friends,

With an urgency born of hope, please know that these actions were taken by Session in September on top of its endorsement in June of the Greater Rochester Black Agenda Group’s declaration that “Racism is a Public Health Crisis Issue.”

One: Session endorsed an Anti-Racism Project from Outreach that will guide us all over the next year and a half following a Listen, Learn, then Act framework to shape our corporate responses to the challenges of dismantling racist systems. This approach will provide many opportunities for each of us to learn and reflect and listen, not as charitable leaders, but as learners of others’ experiences. We will also reflect on our Outreach ministries we already do so well, but through a new lens.

Two: Session endorsed GRBAG’s Letter regarding Daniel Prude’s Killing, thereby adding our name with all other faith organizations to what our city must do now.

Three: Session agreed to sign on as an engaged member of RocACTS, a  black-led faith-based community of multi-racial, interfaith, urban and suburban congregations which is focused on empowering us for systemic change to shape the political, social, and economic decisions that impact all lives. RocACTS is affiliated with the national Faith In Action network.

So now, the Anti-Racism Team will begin to actively prepare ourselves so we may amplify critical and overdue messages for racial justice:

  • We are preparing many opportunities for individual reflection. 
  • And there will be opportunities where we engage and act, and not necessarily lead.
  • Please watch for announcements in Third’s Facebook group and other social media, Thursday’s emailed updates, and the monthly Messenger.
  • Lastly, we want to gather all our individual and church connections of consequence.  Please reach out to organizers Ralph Carter (rcarter56@gmail.com ), Beth Laidlaw (elaidlaw60@gmail.com ), or Laurie Mahoney (Laurie.Mahoney2016@gmail.com) with your connections that can be leveraged in this effort.  

We want your ideas and we want to hear your questions.