Church of Our Saviour, Episcopal, To Host Workshop on Dismantling Racism
Dr. Catherine Meeks, author and educator, to preach, lead discussion on October 29
On Sunday, October 29, Dr. Catherine Meeks, a longtime racial justice educator and advocate from Georgia, will visit Church of Our Saviour, Episcopal, 471 Crosby Street in Akron. Meeks will preach at the 10:30 am service and, from 1-3 pm, lead a workshop about dismantling racism titled “Living Into God's Dream of Community.” Everyone is welcome to both the service and the workshop, and lunch will be provided between the two events.
Meeks, the retired Clara Carter Agee Distinguished Professor of Sociocultural Studies and Social Science at Wesleyan College in Macon, Georgia, has worked for racial justice for some 50 years, and she knows that it’s not easy for white and black people to talk about race.
“So much of what I hear from white people is, ‘We don’t know how to have a conversation about race. We don’t know how to get started,’” Meeks says. “Black people are just tired of it and feel that it should have been over a long time ago.”
To help begin the discussion and encourage a commitment to act on behalf of racial justice, in 2016 Meeks edited and contributed to “Living Into God's Dream: Dismantling Racism in America,” a collection of essays that combines personal stories and theological reflection with real-world examples of ways to forge new conversations on race. The book will be available for sale during Meeks’ visit to Akron.
“We need tools to have the discussion,” Meeks says. “It’s got to be a real conversation, and it’s got to show that we care about each other. I think we have the best chance of doing that with people of faith, because people of faith have already said we believe in something greater than ourselves.”
Meeks is the author of four other books, including "Standing on Their Shoulders: A Celebration of the Wisdom of African American Women." She chairs Beloved Community: Commission for Dismantling Racism in the Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta, and is a frequent radio commentator and the recipient of numerous awards for her community activism. She has led dismantling racism training sessions for more than 1,500 people in the Diocese of Atlanta and has consulted with Episcopal dioceses in New Orleans, Chicago, Pennsylvania and Tennessee.
Church of Our Saviour, Episcopal, on the corner of Oakdale Avenue and Crosby Street, has served Akron’s West Hill neighborhood since 1895. The congregation worships at 10:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. on Sundays, shares a hot meal with neighbors on the last two Wednesdays of each month at 5:45 p.m., and gathers for free coffee, muffins, and groceries on the last Monday of each month at 8 a.m. Church of Our Saviour is known for its active outreach and community involvement and its early and radical welcome of LGBT people and families. Learn more at episcopalakron.org.