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reimaging church

We invite you to our second conversation as part of our the Reimagining Church Initiative on September 9, with the theme, “Social Justice and Thriving Congregations.

The second conversation in this series will focus on how thriving congregations can engage in movements for social and racial justice. The recent protests and marches for civil rights, police reform, and social justice inevitably implicate churches and other religious institutions. What is the relationship between seeking social justice and developing a thriving congregation? What is, or can be, the role of local congregations in the social justice movement? What should be the role of the Church in the social justice movement?

Rev. Najuma Smith-Pollard will be moderating the dialogue between Assistant Professor Robert Chao Romero from UCLA, Rabbi Sharon Brous from IKAR,and Pastor Stephen "Cue" Jn-Marie from The Row LA.

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Robert Chao Romero is an associate professor in the departments of Chicana/o Studies and Central America Studies, and Asian American Studies. He is the author of the recently released book, Brown Church: Five Centuries of Latina/o Social Justicein May 2020, Theology, and IdentityThe Chinese in Mexico, 1882-1940Jesus for Revolutionaries: An Introduction to Race, Social Justice, and Christianity; and Mixed Race Student Politics.

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Rabbi Sharon Brous is the senior and founding rabbi of IKAR and has become a model for reinvigorating Jewish tradition and practice in the US and beyond. She is a leading voice in reanimating religious life in America and beyond, working to develop a spiritual roadmap for soulful, multi-faith justice work in LA and around the country. Her TED talk, “Reclaiming Religion,” has been viewed by more than 1.4 million people and translated into 23 languages.

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Pastor Stephen “Cue” Jn-Marie is a visionary church planter and for the past 14 years has served as pastor of The Row LA, aka “The Church Without Walls,” in Downtown Los Angeles’ Skid Row Community. He was recently featured in the CNN Special, United Shades of America with Kamau Bell, talking about the homeless crisis in LA.

We hope you can join us in our conversations on thriving congregations. If you have not yet RSVP’d for the series of conversations, please take a minute now to do so by clicking the following links.

  • Social Justice and Thriving Congregations
    Wednesday, September 9, 2020 from 9:30am – 11am PST || To RSVP, click here
  • Politics, Divisions, Elections and Thriving Congregations
    Wednesday, October 7, 2020 from 10am – 12pm PST || To RSVP, click here

Best wishes,
Richard Flory, Ph.D
Senior Director of Research and Evaluation

Rev. Dr. Najuma Smith-Pollard
Program Manager of the USC Cecil Murray Center for Community Engagement