Belong is a community of people who will not shy away from difficult discussions. We have committed to inviting God's Kingdom by building an intentionally diverse, justice-loving community. But what does that really mean, and what does that really look like? For Belong, it means that "social justice" is not just something we do once a month. It is a core value of who we are, and it is part of all that we do!
We recognize that "justice" work is smiling and acknowledging the person on the corner asking for spare change, and not pretending they don't exist. Justice work is engaging in our political system, learning and working to improve our society by political activism. Justice work is supporting with financial giving, with time, and with talent community organizations that focus on those our community often overlooks. Justice work is these things and much more-because justice is recognizing our own social location and relative privilege.
At Belong we want to engage in this kind of work and in these kinds of conversations.
Belong as a Sanctuary
Belong has begun the process of considering joining the Metro Denver Sanctuary Coalition. Providing and supporting Sanctuary is a way to proclaim and protect the dignity and worth of every person, regardless of their legal status in our country. We, as a community, have been educating ourselves about immigration policy and learning the ways in which such policies change over decades and painfully tear apart real lives and real families. We have heard from Sarah Jackson and her organization, Casa de Paz, which is a hospitality home for families affected by immigrant detention. We strive to do justice, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with God, who came into this world, fleeing to Egypt, and who often encounters us as a stranger. Let us not ask, "Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you?" Because we know, what we do for "the lease of these" we do for the Lord. Matthew 25:37-40.
If you are interested in joining the Sanctuary Planning Team, please email Jes Jones (firstname.lastname@example.org) and indicate if you are intersted in education and advocay; logistics; or volunteer coordiantion.
Check here for responses to your questions and concerns.
- Nov 5, 3 PM: Social Justice Team meeting at Belong
- Nov 6, 6 PM: Detention Center Vigil at 3130 Oakland St., Aurora, CO 80010
- This will be a family-oriented Day of the Dead themed event, hosted by AFCS and Coloradans for Immigrant Rights, where we’ll hear from people who have been detained or have family members detained. The Belong contact person is Jes Jones.
- Nov 11, 3–5 PM: Movie Night at Park Hill UMC
- Park Hill UMC is currently hosting Araceli Velasquez. Join Park Hill to learn more about her story and the ways in which her family has been impacted by U.S. immigration policy.
- One family movie, and one documentary will be shown, and popcorn and snacks will be provided!
- While there is not set fee to attend, the goal of the event is to raise $1000 to support Aracelie and her legal costs. No amount is too small or too large.
- Park Hill UMC, 5209 Montview Blvd, Denver.
- Belong contact person is Caroline Lee at email@example.com.
- Nov 16, 6 PM: Potluck Dinner (we will bring the food!) with Casa de Paz at 20850 East 45th Ave.; Denver, CO. Families, kiddos, and you are all welcome to attend, if interested, email Caroline Lee (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Dec 2, 2–4 PM: Wage theft training—come learn about the real issue of wage theft and ways to fight against it!
- In an educational and productive summit, M. Thandabantu Iverson, Ph.d., will take us through the "what" and "why" of wage theft, the force that is stealing billions from workers, especially in professions that are heavily occupied by people of color.
- After the educational session, Dr. Iverson will conduct a brainstorming session where you can lend your voice and ideas to plan concrete action to confront wage theft.
- Facebook Event
- Jan 21, 2018: Congregation-wide discussion about Belong becoming a "sanctuary" at Belong.