This country is made up of 5% of the world’s population but consistently accounts for 25% of the world’s prison population. Discussions around criminal justice reform and resolving the incarceration epidemic have begun. What can be learned from our past? Is it time to look back for more effective methods and ideas to address crime? In this talk, Dr. Vivian Djokotoe, Professor and Chair of the Department of Criminal Justice, Western Oregon University, will speak on some responses worth considering.
Alison McIntosh, the Deputy Director for Policy & Communications at Neighborhood Partnerships, leads the work of the Oregon Housing Alliance, a statewide coalition focused on making a difference with the state legislature. She’ll share updates about what’s happening in Salem this session, as well as how citizens can create change through advocacy and how, together, we can solve these housing problems.
The Gospel of Matthew carries us from one crowd scene to the next. First, Jesus and his disciples feed 5,000 people with only five loaves of bread and two fish. In the final scene, a crowd is asked to choose only one of three prisoners to save from public execution. Were some folks from the first crowd also in the last? Why should it matter to us? Sermon by Rev. Craig Moro.
Our annual recognition of Wy’east Charter Sunday takes on special meaning this year, looking back at twenty years as a congregation. Where do we come from, what are we, where are we going? Rev. Sarah Schurr, one of our charter members and an original congregation organizer, will guide our exploration of these questions.
From the Danish newspaper cartoons to the shootings at the Charlie Hebdo offices in France, publishing images of the Prophet Muhammad has led to some tragic consequences. Have we invested in learning from these events or squandered the opportunity? Join me this morning to hear how listening to a story can be a real step towards peace. Sermon by Rev. Craig Moro.
Every year at spring time, the Reed College UU group creates a service for us at Wy’east, and it is always just that – a creation. Whether personal, political, written, or performed, what’s striking is the depth. This year promises nothing less. Come listen to the authenticity.
A meditation on the life in seemingly “lifeless” things and the secret ingredient in any stewardship campaign. Hint: it’s not just money. Sermon by Rev. Craig Moro.
What do you do when you discover that you have privilege? Explore your options and guidance from the Unitarian Universalist principles with Chuck Smith, the Program Director at the Black Parent Initiative and member of the UU Congregation at Willamette Falls, as he reflects on his experience of recently discovering a moment of privilege as a Black male in America.
Here’s how Ambrose Bierce defined Universalist in his famous Devil’s Dictionary: “Universalist, noun. One who forgoes the advantage of a hell for persons of another faith.” But aren’t there some advantages in having a hell to hold the worst people, if not for punishment then maybe just for storage? Let’s examine this question in the light of our second principle, which affirms and promotes “justice, equity, and compassion in human relations.” Sermon by Rev. Craig Moro.
Margot Black, a dynamic college math teacher and co-founder of Portland Tenants United, will talk on her work organizing local renters against unjust property management practices and for policies to ensure access to affordable housing for all. She’ll share her personal challenges as a mother experiencing housing insecurity, humanizing the issue to motivate others into action. Wy’east supported the work of Portland Tenants United last fall through one of our monthly special collections.