SJC

How do you seek justice in your life? The Social Justice Coalition (SJC) works to “…do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with God,” Micah 6:8.

Join us as we respond to injustice through discussion, prayer, education, advocacy and church/community events. For more information, email the SJC and join our Facebook group.

SJC Recommends...

The Social Justice Coalition invites you to look at themes of injustice, racial tensions and white supremacy through the varied lenses of media. With the United States’s shameful history of native american displacement and slavery to the ongoing debate about immigration, the topic of race in America is one that continues to need reflection, conversation, and action to combat the internal messages that we receive through our built-in value systems and false beliefs. Thankfully, there are wonderful resources available – inspiring stories about unforgettable leaders to heart-wrenching documentaries about civil rights. 

It is our hope that these recommendations start or continue essential conversations about race. They can shine a light on ways in which our faith can lead us forward into a world that is more diverse and accepting. 

What films and books have you experienced that promoted thoughts or conversation about anti-racism? Share the title with us at SJC@southchurch.com.

“Moses: When Harriet Tubman Led Her People to Freedom”
Carole Boston Weatherford
Grades 3-5 

Follow Harriet Tubman’s physical and spiritual journey. Weatherford and illustrator Kadir Nelson retell her story of bravery and faith via the Underground Railroad. Click here for more children’s and adult books and a movie…all about the Underground Railroad.

Alan S. Kim and Steven Yeun in “Minari.” Photo courtesy of A24

“Minari”
Lee Isaac Chung
PG-13

Minari is the semi-autobiographical story of a first generation Korean-American family and their move from California to rural Arkansas in the 1980’s in pursuit of a better life and the “American dream.” They move to a small trailer on a large plot of land with the intent to become successful independent farmers of Korean produce. Upon seeing the home (trailer) for the first time, the mother Monica says to her husband Jacob “This isn’t what you promised.”  Click for additional reading, NPR interviews, how to access the film, and questions to consider…

“The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind”
Chiwetel Ejiofor
recommended for 10+, some sad or scary scenes
Netflix

This movie is a frighteningly realistic yet inspiring story of the multi-faceted challenges of drought, farming, civil disruption, and heartache in a small community in Malawi, Africa.  A teenager combines his inventiveness and curiosity with persistence and access to a library to bring about a small miracle that helps his community survive the challenges it faces.  This is also available as a book for adults and a book for young readers. Click here for the official trailer and discussion questions.

“Queen of Katwe”
Mira Nair
PG rating

“While the Queen of Katwe is based on a true story about a Ugandan girl who becomes an international chess champion, it really is about a Ugandan girl who teaches us how to win at a game called life.” (Blackandmarriedwithkids) The movie begins with Phiona Mutesi, a 10 year old illiterate girl who lives in Katwe, a slum in Kampala, the capital of Uganda.  Phiona must help her struggling family survive by selling corn in the streets while her mother, a widow, tries to keep Phiona and her 3 siblings safe. They lose their small one room shack, become un-housed and are on the verge of starvation. Click for questions to consider, the trailer and more…

More from the SJC

SJC signs on to Criminal Justice Reform

Read GBH’s “Prisoner Advocates Call For Reform Of Parole Board As Covid Spreads”

Jesus called us to care for the prisoner.  In 2021,  we are responding to this call by focusing our support on effective and fair criminal justice in Massachusetts, concentrating on our state’s poor racial equity record.  This is a bipartisan issue.

Most of us think of Massachusetts as a progressive state. But it is shocking to find our state has the fourth worst record in the country for racial disparities in criminal justice.  This includes the Parole Board.

On January 4th, the SJC signed a letter to state officials (along with 72 other Massachusetts organizations) calling for substantial reforms of the Parole Board.  We have plans to lobby for two state criminal justice reform bills; to uncover how justice stands in Essex County; and determine what action we can take.  The key emphasis will be on youth justice which has the poorest racial disparities record and the most potential for reform.

Conversations About the Justice System

Courageous Conversations, in partnership with Memorial Hall Library, is offering a series on online conversations focusing on the justice system and issues related to mass incarceration and the very real everyday impacts on communities, especially Black and Latinx communities. They are designed for everyone to participate in meaningful conversation and developing actions that can be taken.

Each program focuses on racial justice with local activist voices at the core. All are open to the public, registration is required.

3/10/2021 @ 7:00 PM – We Need to Talk About An Injustice: The Work of Bryan Stevenson
4/14/2021 @ 7:00 PM – What Positive Justice Looks Like: A Panel Discussion with UTEC (United Teen Equality Center) (Breaking Barriers to Youth Success)

Our South Church Library is a great resource for books about racial justice for both adults and children. Click here for book recommendations and info on how to safely check out our books.

The 21 Day Challenge highlights media that we found deepened our understanding of racism. We share personal reflections and how we connect this work to our faith as Christians.