A Study-Action Guide for Wisconsin Congregations
Wisconsin ranks last among the states in the well-being of African American children, according to a nationwide study conducted by Annie E. Casey Foundation. Asians and Hispanic children also ranked lower than Caucasians in Wisconsin.
What’s driving these dismal statistics? And how can congregations play a constructive role in addressing these disparities at the local level?
On Behalf of Our Children, a four-session study guide produced by the Wisconsin Council of Churches, is a good place to start. The study guide leads you and other adults in your congregation through a thoughtful discussion about race and white privilege, the data from the Casey Foundation study, and concludes with some action planning for you and your congregation to plot your next steps.
On Behalf of our Children is designed to be used in an adult education class, as a mid-week resource (such as a Lenten series) or a half-day retreat.
You can download the Facilitator’s Guide here.
You can download these participant handouts:
Session 1-Race and the Gospel
Session 2-The Hidden Power of Race in our Community
Session 3-“Race for Results:” Exploring the Data
Session 4-What is God Calling Us to Do?
Going Deeper with Scripture, the Church and Racism
While the Gospel seems clear on the evil of racism, the church has not always lived up to the Gospel’s call. Below are four presentations (called “scripts”) which provide historical, biblical, and theological discussions of the church and racism. The first presentation gives a historical overview of the church’s record. The second shows how Jesus confronted the racism of his times. In the third, the author explains how theology has sometimes allowed racism to arise and develop. The final presentation offers a theological defense of nonviolent activism as the appropriate Christian response to racism. Each presentation is followed by discussion questions. These presentations can serve as the basis of a multi-week adult education class as a follow up to the use of On Behalf of our Children.