JUSTICE AND compassion committee

The St. Paul’s Justice and Compassion Committee is on a journey to foster a Beloved Community where people of all races and ethnic backgrounds are welcome. 

We invite others to join the conversation as we learn and grow together. 

Upcoming events:

Montgomery County Parks celebrate Black History Month with a series of free weekend activities at area parks. Go to www.HistoryInTheParks.org for more information, including a PBS documentary about excavations at the Josiah Henson park site!

• Josiah Henson Park (11420 Old Georgetown Road in North Bethesda MD, with parking at the Shriver Aquatic Center across the street) will be open for free tours on Saturdays February 3, 10, 17, and 24, 12:00-4:00 PM; the last tour begins at 3:00 PM. The park is part of the National Park Service “National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom” program, and is the former plantation property where Rev. Josiah Henson was enslaved before he escaped to freedom and wrote an influential 1849 autobiography The Life of Josiah Henson, Formerly a Slave…

• Woodlawn Manor Cultural Park (16501 Norwood Road in Sandy Spring, MD) will host two special programs in February. On Saturday, February 10 from 12:00-3:00 PM, “A Long Way from Home” will have hands-on activities and storytelling about African culture. Space is limited so make reservations. On Saturday, February 24 at 10:00 AM there will be a special Winter Walking Tour about the life of the enslaved at Woodlawn, and the Underground Railroad. (Tours of the Woodlawn Manor House will begin in March and guided hikes with museum tours begin in April.)

Beloved community at St. paul's

The Beloved Community is a sub-committee of the Justice and Compassion Team. Beloved Community formed following a Spring 2016 Supper and Study Class, "Exploring Race," and has since hosted a number of events intended to be educational and faith-forming. We bear a Christian witness of love as we work to identify and dismantle racism.

Some of previous events and programs have included:

Monday, January 15, 2018

FREE annual community screening of the epic documentary at the AFI Silver Theatre, downtown Silver Spring

King: A Filmed Record... Montgomery to Memphis

This acclaimed documentary follows Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and is narrated by a host of luminary artists and activities chronicling King's life, work, and untimely death.

Wednesday, December 6: Still Wednesday

7:00 p.m. in St. Paul’s Sanctuary

Advent Reflections: Race and Healing. Special guest leaders invited reflection on the need for peace and justice in our hearts and communities during this weekly candlelight time of prayer and meditation.

Sunday, November 5, 2017: Emancipation Day Celebration at Josiah Henson Park

This park on Old Georgetown Road, named for a local former slave and minister who wrote about his ordeals, is open only a few days each year. This celebration featured St. Paul's member Virginia Bickford as a park docent.

Sunday, October 15, 2017: Ministry and Race Outreach Potluck.

Members from a number of Montgomery County faith organizations gathered at St. Paul's to engage in discussion and share ideas about moving forward together towards a more just society.

Saturday, September 16, 2017: An Essential Conversation on Race

Facilitator Milagros Phillips led a discussion on race literacy and history. The group of 26 considered how personal experiences shape our current understanding and spiritual growth. 

June 24, 2017: Tour of the Underground Railroad Trail at Woodlawn Park

A guided walking tour explored how enslaved people eluded trackers and gained their freedom. 

May 2017: Community Table at Impact! Silver Spring's Annual Meeting. 

Six-week guided discussion during Lent 2017 of Drew Hart's recent book, 

Trouble I've Seen: Changing the Way the Church Views Racism. 

January 2017: "From Pain to Progress: Spirituals and Sacred Songs for the Journey" concert by pianist Marvin Mills and vocalist Marlissa Hudson, featuring music from the African-American tradition, followed by a time for discussion.

Movies that Move Us events. We gather quarterly to view relevant films, followed by a discussion on race afterwards led by trained facilitator Ernest Crosby. Recent films include Hidden Figures, Selma, and Watermelon Man.