Church Action eNewsletter -- May 16, 2011

Our article on some ways to help out our neighbors affected by the storms now has information for the Housing Portal

1. Theologian Molly Haslam will offer a presentation entitled "A Constructive Theology of Intellectual Disability: Human Being as Mutuality and Response" at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, May 25, at Holy Comforter Church. Speaker Molly Haslam is a physical therapist with twenty years of experience working with individuals with a variety of disabilities, including those with profound intellectual disabilities. Holy Comforter's 6:30 p.m. service of Holy Eucharist will be held after the presentation with community supper to follow. All are welcome!! 737 Woodland Avenue, Atlanta 30316.

2. Update on the Center for the Book event with Dr. Kirby Godsey at First Baptist Decatur, Tuesday, May 31, 7 p.m. This event is free and not ticket is required; doors open at 6 p.m. The former President of Mercer University and one of America’s finest theologians will talk about his important new book, ”Is God a Christian?” In this book, Dr. Godsey explores the artificial boundaries religions create for all people of faith and probes the wisdoms and challenges of seven world religions.

3. Beulah Heights University informational session on the 14-month MBA for church leaders is coming up next week. The program begins in August and applications are being accepting now. To register for upcoming info session on May 31 at 6 p.m. or a one-on-one via phone contact Monique Wilson at 404-695-1360

4. Faith Alliance of Metro Atlanta Presents An Interfaith Dialogue: Exploring The Challenges and Opportunities of the Inclusion of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgendered Members in Our Communities, Wednesday, June 1, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Druid Hills United Methodist Church, 1200 Ponce De Leon Ave NE, Atlanta, 30306. Panelists include; Rabbi Joshua Lesser, Congregation Bet Haverim; Rabbi Hillel Norry, Senior Rabbi Congregation Shearith Israel, Dr. Khalid Siddiq, Masjid Al Farooq, Reverend Dr. Kathi Martin, Executive Director, Interactive Faith Café, Faisal Alam, Founder of Al-Faiha, A program seeking to empower LGBTIQ Muslims; Reverend Beth LaRocca-Pitts, Senior Pastor, St. Mark United Methodist Church. Lunch is $15. Please R. s.v.p. to Jan Swanson at and let her know if you will be eating lunch.

5. Have you Ever Not Considered Applying for a Job in the Metro Area because you knew could not get there? Cobb County Transportation Issues Community Forum atTurner Chapel AME Church on June 2. You're invited to attend this community engagement and education forum on transportation legislation, the Cobb County project list, Cobb County's proposed transit changes, and community impact and feedback on these issues. The event is scheduled for Thursday, June 2 at Turner Chapel AME Church from 6:30 - 8:00 .pm. Refreshments will be served. Child care will be provided
Contact or call 678-948-5323

6. Wonderful St. Timothy Church-wide Yard Sale. Join the congregation and community at St. Timothy United Methodist Church, 5365 Memorial Drive, Stone Mountain, 30083, on June 4, 2011 from 8:00 a.m.- 2:00 p.m. All proceeds will be used for mission and ministry. Questions? Call 404-292-5969.

7. Free workshops for young men are held by the Community Council of Metropolitan Atlanta on Saturday afternoons, 12:30 - 3:30 p.m., at public libraries in Fulton, DeKalb, and Clayton counties. Each workshop, "Overcoming the Odds: Success Strategies for Young Black Males", includes self-assessment exercises, an interactive workshop, lunch, a keynote speech, and an open forum, at no cost to participants. The next workshop will be June 4, 2011. For additional information, please contact the Community Council of Metropolitan Atlanta, Inc. at (404) 935-5859 or See the complete schedule at

8. The Summer Series at Central Presbyterian Church will be ‘’Searching for Justice in Georgia’’. Visit for dates and details of this extraordinary series of topics and speakers. They begin on June 5 with Thinking Theologically about Justice, Law, Property and Human Community; Jon Gunnemann, Professor of Social Ethics, Emeritus, Candler School of Theology. Central is located downtown across the street from the Capitol at 201 Washington Street SW.

9. It’s celebration time at St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church, 45th Pastor Anniversary Services in honor of Rev. Dr. Clayton Taylor, will begin on Sunday, June 5, at 3:30 p.m. The speaker will be the Rev. James Sims. On Friday, June 10, a banquet will be held at the Doubletree Atlanta Airport Hotel, East Point. Banquet speaker is Dr. Anne Watts, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Professor of English at Morehouse College. The celebration will climax on Sunday, June 12, at 3:00 p.m. with the Rev. E. L. Jones speaking. The entire community is invited to join in this celebration. Please direct all questions to St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church, 2870 Headland Drive, East Point, by telephone at 404 349- 0660 or email

10. Greyhounds from Southeastern Greyhound Adoption will visit St. Martin in the Fields Episcopal Church from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday, June 5. The greyhounds will be outside the church to greet people after the morning services. St. Martin's sponsors a pet ministry. Read about it at Stmartins

11. May is National Foster Care Month and to wrap it up the 19th Annual Celebration of Excellence will be held at The GSU Rialto Performing Arts Center in downtown Atlanta. Celebration of Excellence is an event that acknowledges and honors Georgia foster youth who are graduating from high school, GED programs, vocation schools or college. Celebration The event is June 8 and some volunteers are needed.

12. Join former Friendship Center participant, artist, and teacher Jerome Lawrence for a book signing and presentation. His new books are ‘’How to Get What You Want by Changing Your Mind: Finding Life's Lessons in Art’’ (with forward by Rosalynn Carter) and ‘’Big Picture Book of Art.’’ Jerome is currently a member of the Friendship Center Community Council, Church of the Holy Comforter, which works to support the mission of the Friendship Center. The Carter Center, June 8, 2011, at 7 p.m. Flyer

13. Leaders of faith-based organizations and congregations are invited to Building a Diverse Workforce Together: Forging Partnerships between the U.S. Department of Labor and Faith-Based Communities. Friday, June 10, 2:30 – 4 p.m. Interdenominational Theological Center, 700 Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive, Atlanta. This is a free event presented by the SE Regional Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs. The event will feature OFCCP Director Patricia Shiu, who is making her first visit to Atlanta since her appointment by President Obama. A representative from the Employment and Training Administration will also be present to speak to faith-based organizations about how to access grant opportunities. Space is limited for this event so please R.s.v.p as soon as possible to Christopher Seely or 404-893-4564.

14. The TARA Project, a local nonprofit, is hosting a fundraiser art show Saturday, June 11 at 8 p.m., at DooGallery, 205 Holtzclaw Street, Atlanta, with a great band, free drinks (21 and over only please), cool art and jewelry. Funds raised are for midwife training in rural Kenya. Did you know that a woman in sub-Saharan Africa has a 1 in 16 chance of dying in pregnancy or childbirth compared to a 1 in 4,000 chance in a developed country. Training saves a mother, a child, and a future. Have fun while making a difference! Tickets are $10 in advance/$12 suggested donation at the door. More information You will be interested in this article from the New York Times on the amazing difference in the number of lost lives this training makes. Article

15. The Rev. William E. Flippin, Jr., senior pastor of St. Matthew Evangelical Lutheran Church in Columbus, is the featured preacher June 12 and 19 on “Day 1,” the nationally syndicated radio program also accessible online at Flippin has earned degrees from Morehouse College, Morehouse School of Religion at the Interdenominational Theological Center, and Candler School of Theology at Emory University, all in Atlanta, and the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago. He has served at Greater Piney Grove Baptist Church in Atlanta where his father is pastor.

16. A Mental Health First Aid training will be held on June 15 and June 22, 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day, at Holy Comforter Church, 737 Woodland Ave, SE, Atlanta 30316. Breakfast, lunch, and snacks will be provided. The training course requires attendance at both 6 hour sessions. Please R.s.v.p. to Kathryn Bryan to reserve a spot at 404-627-6510 or Attendance is limited! Mental Health First Aid is a 12-hour training course designed to give members of the public key skills to help someone who is developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. Just as CPR training helps a layperson with no clinical training assist an individual following a heart attack, Mental Health First Aid training helps a layperson assist someone experiencing a mental health crisis, such as contemplating suicide. In both situations, the goal is to help support an individual until appropriate professional help arrives.

17. Kindred Spirit Father's Day Prayer Initiative 300 Cobb Galleria Building, 21st Floor June 16, 7:30 - 8:30 a.m., 100 Men Praying for the Children of Kindred Spirit. This year Kindred Spirit, a Christian residential home for pregnant teens, began a Fatherhood Initiative, inviting teen dads to learn, grow, and prepare for the most important job of their lives, being a father. Now they would like to gather 100 men to pray for our children the week of Father’s Day. For one hour on June 16, men are invited to pray together. A continental breakfast will be followed by prayers. Please R.s.v.p. to If you have questions contact Becky Shoaf or 678-315-5037.

18. Indian social activist Kiran Bedi will give a public talk on “Contemporary Issues and Practical Solutions” as part of Emory University’s second “Conference on Religion, Conflict and Peacebuilding” at 4:30 p.m. Sunday, June 19, at Glenn Memorial Auditorium, 1660 N. Decatur Rd. Bedi’s talk is part of Emory’s second Religion, Conflict and Peacebuilding Conference June 17-19, which will feature about 30 presenters from a variety of locales and disciplines, and focus on applications and practices within special local and global contexts. More

19. Registration is now open for the second annual Summer Institute on Addiction, July 9-16, 2011, Simpsonwood Conference and Retreat Center, sponsored by the Southeastern Institute on Chemical Dependency. This comprehensive educational event geared especially for clergy, congregational leaders, and the people they serve will include topics such as the definition of addiction disease, its impact on the family, intervention, treatment resources, the 12-step process, and guidelines for addiction and recovery ministries. Each topic is presented by a professional from the related field. For more information, please visit theSICD or contact jewell@thesicd, 678-525-2692.

20. Columbia Theological Seminary Center for Lifelong Learning offers wonderful learning opportunities for this summer and the coming fall. Explore the website Read about one below.

21. Interfaith Encounter on the Columbia Seminary campus in Decatur coming up July 18-21. Knowing Our Neighbors: A Purposeful Interfaith Encounter” offers the opportunity to talk with leaders from other faith communities, visit their houses of worship, and explore how we can live together in peace and mutual respect. “Increasingly… communities of faith are engaging with one another,” says keynote speaker David Fraccaro. “These encounters can lead to conflict or cooperation. What direction will your congregation go?” Fraccaro, an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ, heads the Interfaith Youth Core's Stranger to Neighbor program, training congregations and diverse communities to build interfaith coalitions committed to welcoming the stranger in our midst. To see the detailed schedule or register online visit

22. Middle school is tough. Project Inside Out: Girl Talk’s Summer Camp for Middle School Girls coming to Atlanta. Week-long camps are coming up this summer for rising 6th, 7th and 8th grade girls offering inspiring impact sessions, community service projects, high school girl mentors and key messages from community leaders. to find out more. Reaching more than 30,000 girls in 42 states, Girl Talk is a national nonprofit organization that establishes positive peer-to-peer mentoring programs to help young teenage girls build self-esteem, develop leadership skills, and recognize the value of community service.

23. Changing the Conversation: A Third Way for Congregations
Alban An intriguing discussion of how congregations can engage in a conversation that will offer an alternative to polarization between liberal or conservative, left or right, red or blue, traditional or contemporary, praise or classical—from Alban.

24. The Georgia Justice Project is looking for church partners to host a backpack and school supplies drive this summer. As part of its long-term commitment to its clients and their families, the Georgia Justice Project hosts a Back 2 School picnic in late July offering fun, food, free information, and a fully stocked, age appropriate backpack for children so they are equipped for the new school year. To find out more or to sign up to host a drive – perhaps as part of Vacation Bible School or other summer special events – please contact Melissa Devereaux at Thank you.

25. The Georgia Supportive Housing Association now offers Supportive Housing Tours for congregations. A 3-hour tour may be scheduled on a Saturday or a weekday and will include visits to Hope House, Trinity House, Welcome House, and Gateway Center. Come and learn how supportive housing is the solution to homelessness, why Georgia will develop 9000 supportive units by 2015, who the GSHA is and what it is doing, and how your congregation can make a difference in the lives of those who may be sleeping on our streets. Sign up now; contact Rev. Houston Wheeler at 404-578-5837 or revhouston4@bellsouth.netSHA

26. If you have not seen the faith and community- based partnership Let....

27. The issue of mountaintop removal coal mining will hit national theaters when ‘’The Last Mountain’’--an Official Sundance Festival Selection--is released this summer. See the Schedule. The ‘’Last Mountain’’ will be here the second week in July.

28. ‘’Our Men At Work: Building Safe Communities’’ 24 week curriculum provides tools, alternatives and opportunities for men to work with and receive support from other men. Men Stopping Violence also offers a public class every other Friday at the DeKalb County Magistrate Court on Tactics and Choices. Additional information is available at

29. World Refugee Day is June 20. Read about it and about resources to help your congregation celebrate this day at

30. Fulton Atlanta Community Action Program reports that low income home energy assistance funds are still available. This federally-funded program will accept applications until June 3. Please call Ollie Morton, Energy Assistance Program, FACA, at 404-320-0166.

31. The Michael C. Carlos Museum of Emory University is a Blue Star Museum, partnering with the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, and more than 1,300 museums across America to offer free admission to all active duty military personnel and their families from Memorial Day through Labor Day 2011. This offer will start on May 27 at the Carlos Museum. Leadership support has been provided by MetLife Foundation through Blue Star Families. List of museums. Director of the Carlos Museum, Bonnie Speed, said, “Offering free admission to our military personnel and their families is a small, but heartfelt token of our appreciation, and we hope they will find their experiences here enriching and inspiring.”

32. Barefoot Sunday is June 5.

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