January 10, 2017
As people of God and followers of Jesus, what matters most right now is that we stand together in our efforts to make a difference in this world. More than ever, we must educate and empower ourselves to ignite and spread love with everything we do.
We, Youth Forum, fear our national leadership choices, policy and support systems show the world that indeed the powerless do not matter. We fear what this means for all minorities and the overall tone in which this country continues to lean. Despite this, we have great hope for, and faith in, decisions that lay before us. We must not sit back and feel the heaviness of defeat; instead, we must push on in search for solutions.
Which brings us to our happiness in formally announcing this year's mission trip to those who march in the light of God within the Plymouth community. April 8, we travel to Atlanta, Birmingham, Montgomery, Selma, Anniston and Tuskegee as we embark on a civil rights pilgrimage. These iconic locations of our civil rights history are still very much alive today in their efforts toward education and equality.
The trip was designed through civil rights educational organization Museum Without Walls. We will tour these cities alongside speakers, presenters and workshop leaders to help us connect past and present fights for racial justice. Our primary hope is that we will learn from our past to be a part of creating a brighter future where everyone matters and all truly have a place at the table.
YF curriculum leading up to this trip, leans heavily on education of privilege realization and racial injustice. Upon return, we hope to share the education we experience. Our goal is to plan an enlightening trip, AND bring that energy back home as teachers.
It is also our honor to announce that Reverend Kelle Brown will join us on this pilgrimage. This will be the first time since the 2001Chicago mission trip that a minister will share the journey with us. Her connections to ministry and the region will enhance the trip, our relationships with one another and our individual faith journeys.
Social justice is a hallmark of Plymouth Church UCC, and we are beyond excited to embark on this push into the future with all of you. As you are able, there are many ways to support us in making this trip reality. We will host a series of fundraising events over the coming months. The first is a congregation-wide viewing and discussion of the movie Selma following 11 am service, January 15, in Hildebrand Hall. Donate directly online at our link: GoFundMe.com/2017YFCivilRightsTrip, click the ‘give’ button (youth mission trip) or donate cash or check at the main office anytime. Above all, we welcome all forms of prayer, love and community support. However you are able to be a part of this with us, we honor your contribution! This is relevant. This is now. And this is what Jesus would actually do. –With all that we are and stand for, we thank you. –Love, Plymouth Youth Forum
Photo: Anna Colwell, High School Program Leader