Race Matters Book Club

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ACTS Race Matters Book Club starts its 6th Year of reading and group discussion on            January 24, 2022 with “Howard Thurman: Essential Writings” published by Orbis Books. 


Howard Thurman was a preacher, educator, poet, theologian and civil rights leader best known for his ethical and cultural criticism. His writing influenced a wide audience, from Martin Luther King and Mohandas Gandhi to young students exploring faith and social responsibility.

Thurman was among the first preachers to conduct Christian services in a nontraditional way, drawing from such eastern religious faiths as Buddhism and Hinduism. His philosophy of interfaith worship and dialogue is reflected in this collection of his essential writings. It reminds us all that out of religious faith emerges social responsibility and the power to transform lives.

Howard Thurman (1900-1981), has been called ""one of the greatest spiritual resources of this nation."" His encounters with Gandhi in India helped instill his commitment to nonviolence. His identification of Jesus as one of the disinherited helped shape the thinking of Martin Luther King, Jr. His embrace of wisdom from other religious traditions emboldened interfaith cooperation and understanding.



As our community’s social justice interfaith network, ACTS is hopeful that dialog will bring greater awareness and action.  There are more than 30 regular members of the book club from 13+ different congregations with an average of a dozen or more persons participating each month.  Come once or come often to share your thoughts with others on the journey.  


To make your registration for the January 24 session, email petersarverACTS@gmail.com  A Zoom link will be sent to regular members and those registered closer to the discussion date.


Looking Ahead:  For February 28, we will be reading “The Sum of Us – What Racism Costs

                            Everyone and How We can Prosper” by Peniel E. Joseph.

Looking Back:  In October we discussed "My Grandmother's Hands: Racialized Trauma and

                         the Pathway to Mending Our Hearts and Bodies”   In this groundbreaking

                         book, therapist Resmaa Menakem examined the damage caused by racism

                         in America from the perspective of trauma and body-centered psychology.8 

                         22 People joined from 8 congregations including: Dewitt Community

                         Church, Pebble Hill Presbyterian, St. Lucy's Catholic Church, Bayberry UCC,

                         Trinity Episcopal, Hopps Memorial CME, Unity Church, and Bethany Baptist.   

                          In September we discussed nobel prize winner Toni Morrison's third

                          novel the "Song of Solomon."  This book was met with widespread acclaim

                          and has also faced challenges in schools throughout the U.S. since 1993.

                          Morrison was the first Black female editor in fiction at Random House in

                          New York City.  Her own subsequent novels have been praised for

                          "addressing the harsh consequences of racism in the U.S." (quoted from

                          Roynon, Tessa)