An Awkward Conversation in the Church event

Alberta-Northwest Conference “welcomes its neighbours” to a conversation about race that is more important than ever in light of racist rallies on both sides of the border. An Awkward Conversation in the Church: Race, Discrimination and the Mission of The United Church of Canada will be held October 4-6, 2017 at the Providence Renewal Centre in Edmonton.

Info and registration:  https://albertanorthwestconference.ca/14840-registration-open-octobers-awkward-conversation-conference/

The Intercultural network encourages you to consider attending. If you are interested in attending, please let the Intercultural Network conveners know; contact Nobuko Iwai or Brian Mitchell-Walker, or get in touch with Julie Graham at the Conference office.

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Bill C-16 stalled in the Senate: take action for transgender human rights

Trans* people are ministers and leaders in the United Church and across the country. They are members of our families, our loved ones, our friends, colleagues, and neighbours, and they deserve to have their identities protected by the law. As an Affirming Conference, we invite you to support Bill C-16 through the United Church of Canada’s action.

Bill C-16 would amend the Canadian Human Rights Act to prohibit discrimination on the grounds of gender identity and gender expression. It will also amend the Canadian Criminal Code to include gender identity and gender expression as a recognized group when offences are motivated by bias, prejudice, or hate.

Bill C-16 passed its third reading in the House of Commons in November 2016, and is now in its second reading in the Senate. Some groups are actively campaigning the Senate to block this bill. Please take action by contacting your senator as soon as possible, and urge the Senate to make Bill C-16 law.

Saskatchewan Senators: https://sencanada.ca/en/senators

Raynell Andreychuk raynell.andreychuk@sen.parl.gc.ca

Denise Batters: denise.batters@sen.parl.gc.ca

Lillian Eva Dyck: lillian.dyck@sen.parl.gc.ca

David Tkachuk david.tkachuk@sen.parl.gc.ca

Pamela Wallin: pamela.wallin@sen.parl.gc.ca

Black History Month

Black History Month or African Heritage Month in Canada, is a time to celebrate the many contributions of Black people to Canadian society and to the United Church. Black people have been part of the United Church from its beginning and continue to play a vital role in the church today.  Find out more and explore these United Church worship and study resources for Black History Month.

New video: Ontario Jewish – Muslim – Christian youth peace camp

Dear interfaith colleagues across Canada:   I am happy to alert you to a remarkable film about interfaith cooperation among youth here in Canada. As Canadians, we can be proud that this kind of interfaith youth cooperation is taking place in Canada. Here is a description of the film followed by a youtube link that will enable you to view this must-see film.

 What happens when Jewish, Muslim and Christian kids attend a summer camp in London, Ontario? Find out as Ahlulbayt TV brings you first-hand experiences of the young campers attending the London Interfaith Peace Camp. Interfaith work doesn’t stop there. London’s Mayor and two City Councillors also attended the camp as an interfaith team of Chistianity, Judaism and Islam emphasizing the importance of embracing Canada’s growing diversity. In a world often filled with challenges and uncertainty, “Peace, Salam, Shalom” will certainly inspire viewers to plant the seeds of friendship and understanding from a very young age. Kindly send your feedback to toronto@ahlulbayt.tv. Enjoy the documentary: https://youtu.be/MpYJq69Lif8   

Wascana Presbytery on Christian attempts to convert Muslims: “No one faith is superior to another”

Recently the Regina Leader-Post included an article about a Christian group that meets monthly to pray for the conversion of Muslims.   Members of Wascana Presbytery (within Saskatchewan Conference of The United Church of Canada) wrote letters to Sabreena Haque of the Islamic Association of Saskatchewan and to the Editor of the Leader-Post in response.

Defying hatred: Moderator statement on the mass murder of LGBT people in Orlando

Hours after Saskatoon’s Pride parade ended, we heard about the mass murder of LGBT+ people at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida.  This hate crime is now the biggest mass shooting by a single person in American history.  It joins the murder of over 300 Lakota people at Wounded Knee in 1890 as a deadly expression of hatred and dominance.

In the words of our Moderator, “If there is a word of hope to be uttered in the face of such tragedy, this is it: When we stand together in defiance of hatred, we are stronger and we are safer.  No act of violence can strip us of our humanity—particularly when we respond to homophobia, transphobia and Islamophobia with love.”

Please read the Moderator’s statement and use it in worship: http://www.united-church.ca/news/moderator-speaks-about-orlando-shooting

Click here to read and share Affirm United/ S’affirmer Ensemble’s statement on the Orlando hate crime, and feel free to use this at Sunday worship and anywhere else.

If your ministry is Affirming, or feels that it can be in respectful solidarity with LGBT people and communities, please prayerfully consider how you can express that solidarity.  Affirming ministries in the Conference can help; they include all the congregations listed here, as well as River Bend Presbytery, St. Andrew’s College, and the Conference itself. Our public witness to God’s unconditional love is needed.

Blanket Exercise in Regina on June 1

Join us June 1 from 2:30 onwards at Christ Lutheran Church in Regina for the Blanket Exercise, an interactive experience that explores the impact of the history between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples in Canada. Without knowing our shared history, we cannot come to reconciliation.

All welcome, no matter your age or identity! The church is wheelchair accessible.

Please share the poster and our Facebook event:
https://www.facebook.com/events/568729493304121/

This will be our SK Conference annual meeting education event.