Justice: Jesus' Way
"Justice is what love looks like in public"
Jesus was a justice-maker, and a rabble-rouser. He turned over tables in righteous anger, and laid down his life for his friends. He hung out with women, lepers, and sex workers -- the kind of people who were most stigmatized in his time. He himself was a marginalized Jewish man, living under Roman occupation, who was executed by state violence. That's the Jesus we follow and the God we worship.
We honor that each person, and all of creation, are made in the image of God and should be treated with dignity, equality, and respect. And we walk our talk -- making sure that our daily lives, our votes, our activism, and our kindness reflect this truth.
Plymouth seeks to be a home and an incubator for “Faith Activists ” – people willing to work collaboratively with other churches, community groups, people of other faiths and no faith, the national UCC, and other local/national movements to carry Jesus’ gospel of justice and compassion into the world through education, service and witness.
Given the nature of these times, we are nimble and adaptable, ready to respond to the causes and efforts that touch congregants deeply and that respond to our changing social and political climate.
Our strategies include:
Education/Information: For instance, a special gathering about women, rage, and spirituality, movie nights with guest cast members of John Brown's Body at San Quentin Prison and The Medea Project, a book group about Radical Hope: Letters of Love and Dissent in Dangerous Times by Carolina De Robertis, and workshops about the "What's Up With Our Jails?" report.
Service: We have a long-term partnership with Hoover Elementary school in West Oakland -- donating backpacks and winter coats, tutoring and teaching STEM subjects, and offering volunteers and seed funding to an extensive school garden. Some of our members have formed an accompaniment team to come alongside a recently arrived immigrant family with resources and support. We show up when hard things happen, both near and far; for example, we hosted a benefit concert for Hurricane Harvey, donated gift cards during the fires in Paradise, and sent a bilingual minister to Orlando to support survivors after the Pulse nightclub shooting.
Witness: We engage with local and national coalitions to witness for justice, advocating for the end of mass incarceration, marching at the Women's March, Oakland Pride, and the Climate March, serving as first responders when communities are threatened by ICE raids, participating in the Black Lives Matter movement and other demonstrations for racial justice, etc.