Call on President Trump to Support the International Criminal Court

Call on President Trump to Support the International Criminal Court

The United Church of Christ has long supported the work of the International Criminal Court, as reflected in our 2005 General Synod resolution. Our support for the ICC is a reflection of our faith values that calls us to defend the most vulnerable, uphold human rights, and build a world in which peace and justice are intertwined (Psalm 85:10) in the vision of Just Peace.

At a time in which human rights and international institutions are under attack, we must speak out to affirm such values and institutions, asserting with clarity our commitment to building a Just World for All.

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Duet's 3rd annual Family Caregiver Symposium

Duet's 3rd annual Family Caregiver Symposium

More than 65 million people, nearly one third of the U.S. population, are family caregivers that provide unpaid care for a loved one. On Thursday, October 18, Duet: Partners In Health & Aging will host the 3rd annual Family Caregiver Symposium—an event meant to equip, empower and celebrate family caregivers. The event will take place from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at First Christian Church of Phoenix, 6750 North 7th Avenue in Phoenix and costs $20 for family caregivers and $40 for professionals.

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Support Refugee Resettlement

Support Refugee Resettlement

As people of faith we know that the face of God is in every refugee, asylum-seeker and sojourner in our midst, and we must make sure that our Members of Congress do everything they can to hold the Administration accountable for meeting the 45,000 refugee admissions goal for 2018 and urge the Administration to commit to resettling at least 75,000 refugees in fiscal year 2019.

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“No One Cares About Crazy People” Spotlights Our Fractured Mental Health System and One Family’s Battle with Schizophrenia

“No One Cares About Crazy People” Spotlights Our Fractured Mental Health System and One Family’s Battle with Schizophrenia

by Kathryn Andrews, a member of the Southwest Conference’s Widening the Welcome Committee and Desert Palm United Church of Christ

“What if you raised a child who grew up sunny, loved, and loving, perhaps unaccountably talented, a source of family joy, only to watch that child slowly transform in adolescence into a mysterious stranger, shorn of affect, dull of gaze, unresponsive to communication – and perhaps worse?” This is one of wrenching questions author Ron Powers asks in “Nobody Cares About Crazy People,” the story of his schizophrenic sons.

The book is more than a chronicle of one family’s struggle with a serious mental illness. It also serves as an indictment of our national approach to dealing (or not dealing) with mental illness.

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Disaster Alert: HURRICANE FLORENCE

Disaster Alert: HURRICANE FLORENCE

On behalf of the Southwest Conference UCC Disaster Ministries I extend our prayers and concerns to our congregations and their communities who are in the path of Hurricane Florence. The hurricane is expected to make landfall during the next couple days along the North Carolina coast. Due to the size of the storm, its anticipated path and its expected “stalling” along the coast, several states will be severely impacted. If you have family and friends in any of these locations, I would strongly encourage that they heed the local and regional warnings being issued by emergency management officials.

You and your congregation may want to extend your compassion and assistance to the areas affected.

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People of faith act to stop Ford Motor Company’s efforts to weaken our environmental protections

People of faith act to stop Ford Motor Company’s efforts to weaken our environmental protections

Interfaith Power & Light, United Church of Christ, and United Methodist Women are working on a campaign to support the Clean Car Standards. This effort is focusing on the Ford Motor Co. and some details are in this article along with a link to the petition (where there is a sign up button for individuals and a sign up button for clergy and faith organization leaders).

We’ve got one week to get as many additional signers as possible. Feel free to send this along to other state-based faith organizations for high level clergy and (faith) organizational leader sign-on.

We’re working with Michigan Interfaith Power & Light to deliver the petition to Ford later in September, so we need all sign-ons by Sept. 20th.

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Faith, Equity & Inclusion Event Series: Confronting Religious Intolerance

Faith, Equity & Inclusion Event Series: Confronting Religious Intolerance

Thursday, September 20, 2018, 6:30 – 8:30 PM MST
Church of the Beatitudes, Nelson Hall
555 West Glendale Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85021

This session examines religious intolerance and how people of faith can resist intolerance in a constructive way. Sponsored by Arizona Faith Network Theological Dialogue Commission and Next Steps Subcommittee, this session will include an open dialogue where we will discuss the reasons why we so often demonize others, the ways our faith traditions contribute to or challenge intolerance, and whether or not there are limits to tolerance. Participants will be asked to commit to adopting one or more actions to resist intolerance in their daily lives.

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Central American family embraced in Arizona

Central American family embraced in Arizona

A brave woman and mother from Central America shared her family's story with a group of migrant justice advocates from several Conferences and Churches across the the United Church of Christ over dinner last week. The conversation with almost 100 people, brought together by the Southwest Conference's Faithful Witness at the Border, took place over a shared meal at the host church, Good Shepherd United Church of Christ, Sahuarita, Ariz.

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Rev. Delle's reflections on "A Week of Faithful Witness at the Border"

Rev. Delle's reflections on "A Week of Faithful Witness at the Border"

Over one hundred church people from a mix of denominations, from all over the country - clergy and lay people  gathered at the Good Shepherd UCC and on both sides of the border. This Witness at the Border program is a response to the separation of migrant and asylum seeker families, and the public outcry for action to support these families, to stop the separations at the border, and place pressure on our elected officials to stop the violence perpetrated on this vulnerable population by our US immigration policies and practices.

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Faithful Witness at the Border group unites for communion and confrontation

Faithful Witness at the Border group unites for communion and confrontation

A service of communion on the Mexico side of the United States Border Wall on Tuesday, August 28, underscored the stark realities of current U.S. immigration policies and border militarization for more than 80 people of several faith traditions participating in the United Church of Christ’s Faithful Witness at the Border. Hours following that sacred vigil, a time of witness, with a demonstration at the U.S. Border Patrol Offices in Nogales, Ariz., as participants prayed for the detained children, their parents, border patrol agents and issued a moral demand — that families be reunited.

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Commentary: An Immigrant's Story

Commentary: An Immigrant's Story

This story has been difficult to write because it doesn't yet have an ending, and in all likelihood, it will not be a happy one.

Two weeks ago Juan, a friend of several people in the United Church of Santa Fe (including me), left his house to go to work at a job site. He stopped to get gas and a few minutes later, he was picked up by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and transported to a detention center in El Paso, Texas, three hundred miles away. Because his cell phone was confiscated, he had no way of contacting his wife and children for several days.

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Faith Witness at the Border forging immigrant justice connections across UCC

Faith Witness at the Border forging immigrant justice connections across UCC

More than 100 people from seven Conferences in the United Church of Christ, joined by members of three ecumenical partner Churches, are converging on the border town of Sahuarita, Ariz., for several days of study and service around immigrant justice.

The Rev. Bill Lyons, Conference Minister of the Southwest Conference UCC, the Rev. Randy Mayer, pastor of the host church, Good Shepherd UCC, and a half dozen members of the National Staff welcomed a majority of the participants during a Sunday evening supper August 26, to talk through understandings of Border/Immigration Ministries, review current U.S. immigration policy, and to share an itinerary that includes a trip to Nogales, Sonora, Mex., a communion service at the Border Wall, and a walk along migrant trails in the desert.

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