Church Action eNewsletter Week of January 23, 2017

God calls us to some things we cannot do alone.

Regional Council of Churches of Atlanta

Church Action eNewsletter Week of  January 23, 2017

1. Atlanta Jewish Film Festival kicks off this week and 75 films will showcase the best in international cinema shown through a uniquely Jewish lens. AJFF is the largest film festival in the region and the largest Jewish film festival worldwide.  There are several notable films with interfaith themes this year. Zacma: Blindness is one of the best and screens tomorrow. The entire lineup can be viewed at The Regional Council of Churches has been given a code to allow our readers a discount on any of the films, excluding closing night:  IFTH9594. The best way to use this code is to book directly through Ticket Alternative by phone at (678)701-6104 or at

2. Superintendent of Atlanta Public Schools and members of the Atlanta Board of Education announce upcoming community town hall meetings and public hearings throughout the district. They started on Monday. Read all the information here. 

3. Scholar and immigration advocate, Marie Marquardt has spoken in classrooms and communities across the nation. Through her work as co-chair of El Refugio, she’s had a close view of both the system’s flaws as well as its human costs. This month, Marquardt, a scholar-in-residence at Emory’s Candler School of Theology, releases The Radius of U, a young adult novel which examines the hardships Latin American teens face fleeing gang violence and seeking asylum in the U.S. Thursday, Jan. 26, Marquardt will be joined by illustrator Carlos Morataya to discuss the novel at an author talk and book signing, Barnes & Noble at Emory Bookstore in Emory’s Oxford Road building. The 7 p.m. event is free and open to the public.

4. Minister, Georgetown professor, and author Michael Eric Dyson will speak about his book Tears We Cannot Stop: A Sermon to White America at the Carter Center on January 26, at 7:30 p.m. This book amplifies the themes Dyson voiced in his New York Times op-ed articles addressing the current and long-burning race relations crisis in America. This book digs deep into America’s racial past while also offering the most up to date investigations, as well as the opportunities we have to make things better.

5. Georgia Latinos Against Domestic Violence, a program of Ser Familia, Inc. will hold a community meeting Friday, Jan. 27, 12- 2 p.m., Argosy University, 980 Hammond Dr NE #100, Atlanta 30328.Attorneys will be on hand to discuss how the new federal administration may impact immigration and much more. Space is very limited, lunch will be served to those who reply. R.s.v.p. here.  

6. EPIPHANY unveiling human trafficking art exhibit, Friday, January 27, 7:00 p.m., Peachtree Christian Church, 1580 Peachtree Street NW, Atlanta 30309. A committee of artists, creative thinkers, and social activists from Peachtree Christian Church and InterVarsity Christian Fellowship at SCAD Atlanta will host this exhibit to heighten awareness of human trafficking in Atlanta. The evening will conclude with a presentation by Bob Rodgers, president of Street Grace, a Christian non-profit fighting to end domestic minor sex trafficking in Metro Atlanta. 

7. Smart Women and Money, a two hour workshop on understanding money management, how to grow your money, and how to build future wealth for your children. The workshop will be held on Sat., Jan. 28. 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., at Mt. Zion AME Church, 2977 LaVista Road, Decatur 30033.  Call (678)476-3791 to register.  There will be workshop materials, snacks, and raffle prizes. Special speakers from Mothers Voices and Priamerica.   Suggested $10 donation to Mt. Zion AME Church. 

8. “A Message for My Brothers” is the sermon preached by the Rev. Dr. Camille Cook Murray on Day 1 this week. Hear Day 1 in the Atlanta area on Sundays at 7:05 a.m. on News 95.5 and WSB 750 AM. Visit Day1 for text, audio, and visual resources or to hear or read the sermon now.

9. The announcement of the Clayton County Women's STEM Initiative to introduce women, ages 21 and older, to lucrative career paths in the STEM field had a broken link. Visit for all the information. Deadline is January 30.

10. Thomas L Friedman, bestselling author of From Beirut to Jerusalem, and many others, has written a new book discussing how we have entered an age of dizzying accelerating changes and explaining what we need to do to live in it. Thank You for Being Late explores how to understand the news, the work we must do, the education your kids will need, the investments your employer has to make, the moral and geopolitical choices our country has to navigate and explains why we can never look at the world the same way again. Talk and signing, Feb. 1, 7:30 p.m., at the Marcus JCCA, 5342 Tilly Mill Road, Dunwoody. For more information and tickets visit

11. Noted Christian activist and author Shane Claiborne will speak during Candler’s James T. and Berta R. Laney Legacy in Moral Leadership and the school’s Social Concerns Network three-city tour on the death penalty. Executing Grace in Georgia: A Faithful Discussion About the Death Penalty will explore how people of faith and conscience can change the conversation about justice, mercy, and forgiveness in the state, which executed nine inmates in 2016, more than any other state in the nation. On Friday, Feb. 3, Claiborne will speak at Glenn Memorial U.M.C. on Emory’s campus, 7:00 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 4, he will be at Covenant Presbyterian Church in Athens at 10:30 a.m., and at Centenary Church in Macon at 6:00 p.m. Local guests, including former inmates, family members, and legislative advocates, will also speak at each gathering. All three events are free and open to the public, but registration is required. Register here for any of the three events. For any of the events register here.  

12. NAMI Family to Family Class in Cobb County begins February 7 and will meet for 11 weeks. This invaluable free education program is for family, partners, and friends of adults living with mental illness. The class will meet at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesdays at First Presbyterian Church in Marietta. Pre-registration is required. Contact Neill Blake at for more information or to register.

13. Dr. Christine Mann Darden presents On Their Shoulders and With the Church in the Columbia Theological Seminary Science for Seminaries program. She retired as a member of The Senior Executive Service in March 2007 from NASA Langley Research Center and has been recognized with dozens of honors and awards. February 8, at 11:00 a.m., Jan Edmiston, co-moderator of the General Assembly for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), will also be in attendance. This event is open to the public in the Harrington Center Chapel, Columbia Seminary, 701 S. Columbia Drive, Decatur. Darden was recently included in Hidden Figures as one who stood on the shoulders of Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughn, and Mary Jackson, NASA “Human” Computers who as members of the segregated West Computers contributed to the NASA Space Program in the early 1960s. The latter are currently being featured in the Twentieth Century Fox movie of the same name. 

14. The Flower Festival at this year’s Cathedral Antiques Show will be packed with beauty and entertainment. On Friday, February 10, former White House floral designer Laura Dowling will give a presentation at 10:30 a.m. followed by the launch of her new book, Floral Diplomacy at the White House, which will be sold at the show before it is available elsewhere. Margot Shaw, founder and editor in chief of flower magazine, will give a presentation at 1:30 p.m., and at 2:30 p.m., Dowling and Shaw will judge an Iron Floral Design Competition in which three teams will compete against themselves and the clock to create floral masterpieces. More information and tickets are available at

15. Pastors of all denominations are invited to a pancake breakfast and tour of Discovery Village at Sugarloaf. Experience this senior-living community, including the delicious cuisine, beautiful dining area, and friendly team members. Reserve your seat for breakfast on Monday, Feb. 13. Call (770)232-2807 by February 11 to R.s.v.p. for Pancake Breakfast, Refreshments, & Community Tours, 1220 Satellite Boulevard, Suwanee.

16. The safeTALK training, suicide prevention, announced for Feb. 18 at Powder Springs UMC is full. Look for announcements of more trainings in the near future. 

17. Join the Interfaith Community Institute for a special afternoon at the Alliance Theatre, Too Heavy for Your Pocket on Sunday, February 19, 2:30 p.m. In rural Tennessee at the height of the Civil Rights Movement two young couples struggle to understand justice, love, and their own responsibilities. A beautifully written look at the personal cost and private struggles behind public events, this play speaks powerfully about the bonds of friendship and what defines true family. It was winner of the 2017 Alliance/Kendeda National Graduate Playwriting Competition. After the show, there will be an opportunity to meet with the playwright, Jiréh Breon Holder. The seats for the discounted tickets are limited. The link to purchase is here.

18. The Torah Law and Lore from Religion to Civilization, Tues., Feb. 21, 7 p.m., Reynolds Landing, with Rabbi Ronald Gerson and Ronni  Udoff, Lake Oconee Congregation Chai, Lake Oconee Community Church. Call (706)347-0480 if you have questions.

19. Major Catholic Speaker Series 2017 at Aquinas Center Women In The Catholic Church: A Conversation will feature Dr. Carolyn Woo, former President of Catholic Relief Services, Thursday, Feb. 23, 7:30 p.m., Emory University, Rollins School of Public Health, Claudia Nance Rollins Building, P-Level Auditorium. Dr. Woo was named one of the “500 most powerful people on the planet” by Foreign Policy Magazine. Other Participants in the conversation are Catherine Perry, founder of the InwardBound Center for Nonprofit Leadership, Sr. Mary Priniski, O.P., Catholic Committee of the South, and Layla Karst, doctoral student in religion Emory University. Tickets are free. Reserve tickets here. 

20. Join Partners for Homes for a forum “Reimagining Homelessness in Atlanta: How faith communities can collaborate with the homeless continuum of care to make homelessness rare and brief.” Save the date, March 9, 9 a.m. - 1 p.m.  Keynote speaker will be Shawn Duncan with the Lupton Center.  Registration link will be furnished later. 

21. Beloved authors and teachers Richard Rohr, Cynthia Bourgeault, and Wm Paul Young come together to reveal a three-dimensional view of the many sided mystery. They believe the Trinity—fully experienced and enjoyed—has the capacity to change everything. When we consciously engage in loving communion, we open ourselves to being transformed at the deepest levels. Join Trinity: The Soul of Creation, an ecumenical and inter-faith gathering, in Albuquerque or on line. Register or find out more about the April 6-8 conference

22. If you minister to military families and missed the webinar “Preventing Intimate Partner Violence in Veterans” from the National VA Chaplain Center it is available for viewing online at  

23. The next Atlanta faith leader speaking of the importance of the Atlanta Interfaith Manifesto is Soumaya Khalifa, Islamic Speakers Bureau of Atlanta. Why is the Atlanta Interfaith Manifesto important? She says, “Over the years I have heard concerns raised about interfaith work including (1) it will make me compromise my faith, and (2) I will be bringing the “lite” version of my faith to be accepted. The answer to both of these concerns is a definite NO. Read the full article here.  

24. Thanks to the Barton Child Law and Policy Center for bringing these resources on human trafficking to our attention. Find ways to raise awareness and educate yourself and your congregation about this evil here.

25. Empowerment Resource Center is seeking a Certified Alcohol Drug Counselor (CADC) to assist with behavioral health services. For more information read here. Interested and qualified parties should submit a resume and cover letter to No phone calls please. 

26. Are you looking for a meaningful volunteer commitment? Omar Nelson explains how Court Appointed Special Advocates make a difference in the lives of children ensnared in deprivation hearings. He will speak to your congregation, or your group, or to you. Contact him at

27. Since 1983, the Academy for Spiritual Formation has offered an environment for spiritually hungry pilgrims, lay or clergy, which combines academic learning with experience in spiritual disciplines and community.  Theologically the focus is Trinitarian, celebrating the Creator’s blessing, delighting in the companionship of Christ, and witnessing to the power of the Holy Spirit to transform lives, churches, and the world. This spring “Living the Ways of Grace” will be held April 30-May 5, at St. Simons, Ga. Read more...


Visit our website for a complete community calendar, links to the Toolbox  for Mental Health Ministry, websites for daily devotionals, and many other resources. We will be happy to include your announcements in an upcoming eNewsletter. Send them to



Ethel Ware Carter

The Regional Council of Churches of Atlanta, Inc.

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