The theological reflection this month is from Decolonizing Wealth by Edgar Villanueva.
Choose one or more of the following:
Book of the Month: The Hidden Rules of Race: Barriers to an Inclusive Economy by Andrea Flynn, Susuan R. Holmberg, Dorian T. Warren, and Felicia J. Wong
Read: (long article) “The Making of Ferguson”
Struggle for black and Latino mortgage applicants suggests modern-day redlining (11:12) The gap between white and black homeownership is wider now than it was in 1960, with signs of modern-day redlining showing up across the country.
The Disturbing History of the Suburbs (6:19) Learn about redlining: the racist housing policy from the Jim Crow era that still affects us today.
History of Sundown Towns (2:24)
House Rules: Where you live is important. It can dictate quality of schools and hospitals, as well as things like cancer rates, unemployment, or whether the city repairs roads in your neighborhood. Much of this story is told to Nancy Updike by ProPublica reporter Nikole Hannah-Jones, who did a series on the Fair Housing laws, with more stories, research and interviews.
If you’re traveling by car, train, or air, do you notice housing patterns? How is housing arranged? Who lives near the downtown commerce area and who does not? What is the density of a given neighborhood? Can you correlate any of this to racial identity?
What do you know about the history of your neighborhood? Do you live in a home that was passed down in your family? How is your relationship with your neighbors? Who do you and your neighbors consider to belong in your neighborhood?
Do some research to discover if your town or a town you have lived in was a sundown town. Visit your local library and ask them to help you identify Sundown Towns in your area.
Contact a realtor in your area and ask about housing patterns and lending practices in your town. Are there banks in your area that are known for discriminatory lending practices?
Explore the demographic profile of the 3-mile radius around your church.
What stood out to you the most?
How are you feeling?
What action will you take?
Who in your family/community may want to take action with you?
Lord, Lord, Open Unto Me
Open unto me, light for my darkness
Open unto me, courage for my fear
Open unto me, hope for my despair
Open unto me, peace for my turmoil
Open unto me, joy for my sorrow
Open unto me, strength for my weakness
Open unto me, wisdom for my confusion
Open unto me, forgiveness for my sins
Open unto me, tenderness for my toughness
Open unto me, love for my hates
Open unto me, Thy Self for myself
Lord, Lord, open unto me!
- Howard Thurman