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Keeping an Anti-Racism Focus

As 2021 unfolds, events in the public arena once again demonstrate the dehumanizing reality of racism.  

The existence of racism is a grievous fact. For people of color, racism is pervasive.  This pervasiveness is evident in every aspect of life, including the life of congregations.  

Yet, congregations of color represent resilient strength with robust voices and true hearts. The Center for Congregations learns each time testimonies and stories of such strength are shared.  

Many white congregations are seeking resources about anti-racism. There is the desire to listen, learn and become allies. The Center is committed to connecting congregations to resources that will support learning journeys leading to a more just world.   

Here is a link to additional anti-racism resources.  You will find even more as you search the CRG.   

For The CRG Created For The CRG
After the Election

The 2020 election is just days away. The CRG has provided resources to keep congregations informed of how they can navigate the stresses of dealing with contentious politics in and around their communities. But what about after the election? What about the possible conflicts that may arise as a result of the election? 

Auburn Seminary hosted a multi-faith conversation entitled, “Faith Leaders Call for Moral Courage Now” with Auburn President, Rev. Dr. Katharine Rhodes Henderson, along with Dr. Keisha McKenzie and Dr. Sharon Groves from Auburn’s program team, in conversation with Auburn Senior Fellows Stosh Cotler (CEO, Bend the Arc) and Rev. Brian McLaren (Activist and Public Theologian).

Watch as these five faith and justice leaders discuss how they prepared for the 2020 election and for its possible aftermath. What will our responses communicate to the world about who we are? How will we leverage the outcome of the election to build a better world? Will relationships and trust really help create change and if so, how can our congregation do the work

Click here to visit this resource

For The CRG Created For The CRG
Compassionate Response to Sexual Assault Survivors

Though the #MeToo movement has brought greater media attention to sexual assault, it is not a new phenomenon. There are countless examples of congregations and denominations acting in ways that proved harmful to victims. Even the most well-intentioned leaders can inflict pain due to a lack of information and preparation. 

The Indiana Coalition to End Sexual Assault has put together a host of resources for congregations seeking to get ahead of the game. As any great leader will tell you, the best plans are laid well before they’re needed. If your congregation would like information on working with law enforcement and other professionals to form Sexual Assault Response Teams, check out the SART guide. There are also other workshops and trainings offered through ICESA that congregations can take advantage of. Finally, to gain a better perspective on the ways sexual assault impacts victims, watch the Break The Silence video.

 


 


 

Books

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Young Children and Worship
This book introduces a Montessori-style curriculum for children, connecting their capacity for wonder and spiritual engagement with Scripture's ability to communicate meaning on multiple levels.
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Preaching: Communicating Faith in an Age of Skepticism
This resource uses a two-fold approach to form the basis for a thoughtful and practical guide on ways to communicate the power of God in today's setting.
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The Body Keeps the Score
This psychology-based book shares the prevalence of trauma, how it impacts the brain and the body, and how we can heal.

Articles

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Curriculum Overview for Children's Formation
This chart contains a comprehensive list of currently available children's faith formation curricula with descriptions of each.
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Ending Well
This article outlines concrete, practical steps to follow for a church that has decided to close.
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Money and Faith: William G. Enright and the Big American Taboo
This article teaches the redemptive link between faith and money, highlighting a philosophy of generosity from the Lake Institute on Faith & Giving and Rev. Dr. William Enright.

Web Resources

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Mapping the 21st Century Ministry Landscape
This web resource provided by Keith Anderson, a Lutheran pastor and co-author of Click 2 Save Reboot: The Digital Ministry Bible , argues that "we need to take the time to reacquaint ourselves with our local communities and plug in to our new digital neighborhoods".
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Building Church Leaders
This website of practical training packs quickly equips leaders and teams for effective ministry. Content spans over 100 topics including staff orientation, facilities management, and discipling in a digital age.
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Church Law & Tax
This website helps congregations navigate the complex legal landscape with articles and interactive training.

Organizations

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Yale Youth Ministry Institute
This extensive resource hub equips youth leaders to connect with diverse youth, walking alongside them through today's modern challenges.
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Urban Youth Workers Institute
This organization provides training and resources for effective ministry within communities of urban and at-risk youth.
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Generis
This consulting group helps churches with fundraising and effective ministry.

Media

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A New State of Mind - Ending the Stigma of Mental Illness
This hour-long documentary details the stories of everyday people while breaking through the silence, shame, and stigma related to mental illness.
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Worship in Times of Crisis and Trauma
This panel discussion provides insight to manage disasters and traumas in the congregation and community.
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Candler in Conversation: What do I say to my white congregation?
In this video panel white pastors discuss how to preach and lead white congregations in a time of racial unrest.

Events

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Creating a Culture of Renewal
This series of education events hosted by Rebekah Simon-Peter equips participants to lead congregational change.
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Rural Ministry Conference
This conference focuses on educating and empowering prospective and current clergy, for ministry and in general, at rural congregations.
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RelateStrong
This training program prepares participants to facilitate groups and build stronger, healthier relationships.

Periodicals

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National Association for Temple Administration (NATA) Journal
The National Association for Temple Administration (NATA) is an active professional network of Reform Jewish Synagogue Executive Directors that publishes a twice-yearly journal with articles written by members and Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) staff. Topics include: collaboration, giving, communication (including social media), technology, and leadership transition.
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Church Health Reader
The quarterly Church Health Reader recognizes the challenge of maintaining spiritual, emotional, physical and social well-being in a world of stress, violence, confusing value systems and social turmoil and offers practical, timely instruction and helpful options.
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Church Finance Today
This e-newsletter covers timely finance topics such as record keeping, business expenses, church office security, internal controls, best practices for donations, and money management.

Software

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Church Community Builder
This member management software connects congregations in its giving, volunteers, small groups, child check-in, communication, and a customized app.
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Fellowship One
This member management software has a suite of tools to track attendance, member engagement, and donations. It's easy to use from any computer or mobile device.
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WeShare: Online Giving for Churches and Other Community Organizations
This company makes online donation software that can be used with computers, tablets, and smartphones, and through credit cards, debit cards, or electronic transfer of funds.
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