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Raise Class Awareness

Rev Amy Shaw

Rev. Amy Shaw

Seven Questions for Congregations – to Help Raise Class Awareness

By Rev. Amy Shaw

Rev. Shaw is the settled minister at the Lake Country Unitarian Universalist Church in Hartland, Wisconsin.

  1. Does your congregation, or do your committees, require leaders to spend their own money and then be reimbursed for things? This prohibits people without funds from rising to leadership.
  2. Do you charge low amounts for childcare/children’s events, but without family caps? $5 for one kid becomes $30 for six kids, out of reach for a low-income single mother.
  3. Are all of your meetings and events geared toward people with 9-5 jobs? How does someone on 3-11 shift get to participate in the life of your church?
  4. Are meetings and events held at the church, or is “hosting” things at peoples’ homes part of your culture? How does this feel for someone who can never host, because they live somewhere unsafe, or they feel they can’t afford even basic hospitality, or they are dealing with vermin?
  5. How much money do your social events require? Are there family caps? The default is never “Well, we can do scholarships.” The default must be “everyone can go – now how do we put the funds together?”
  6. How do you speak about ethical obligations? Are you making people who cannot afford ethical eating feel marginalized? Are you presenting things as ethical obligations which are financially impossible for many people – or laying on the guilt?
  7. Finally, rather than having conversations about how we as “haves” can invite “have-nots” to share our churches, can we instead have conversations which say “This is what we believe all in our church should be able to do – now how do we make it possible?” Scholarships and other “you ask us and we’ll let you do this thing for free that the rest of us are paying for ” approaches can taste like ashes. Forget charity, and embrace solidarity.

(Used with permission)

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March 15, 2017
  • UUAMP "Class Stories: Sharing Our Whole Selves"

    March 15, 2017
    Milwaukee, WI, USA

    Class Stories: Sharing Our Whole Selves
    This interactive workshop explores how classism limits our congregations' ability to thrive. Together, we will identify new ways to address classism and create a more inclusive and cohesive faith community that uses and celebrates the gifts of all its members. Presented by Kellie Kelly.

    See more details

March 20, 2017
March 22, 2017
  • Convening Call

    March 22, 2017 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
    ZOOM Online

    UU Class Conversations wants to connect with congregations and church members that have participated in our workshops. Convening Calls will create an online space to talk about what was learned in the workshops, discuss issues that have come up since your workshops, and connect with other congregations that are working on the same problems and solutions.

    Time: Mar 22, 2017 8:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
    Join Online: https://zoom.us/j/960506317
    Join Phone: 646-558-8656
    Meeting ID: 960 506 317

    See more details

(Eastern timezone)