Christian Service Mission’s Junior Board gives CSM leadership a chance to hear the voices of young professionals, while also challenging its members to think deeply and ask hard questions regarding race, justice, poverty, and more. At a time of unrest throughout our world, our junior board has been in conversation about how to respond. The most recent zoom meeting included discussion of how black members have been personally affected by racism, how they choose to respond, and how non-black members should act and provide support to/for those that are hurting. We asked a couple of members to write down their thoughts on the topic of race post-meeting.
Thoughts from Junior Board Members Dominique Belton and Wesley Wright:
Q. What do you think we, as young people, can do to help?
A. “The issue of racism is one that we do have the potential to tackle as young people, but it requires the ability to stretch our generation bandwidth of listening. We need to listen to those who came before us, but also be able to converse with those who follow us in years as well. It is only then that we can use historical and current context to find a middle ground of perspective, understanding, and universal mediation on this issue.” – Wesley
Q.What resources would you suggest to help us all reach unity? / What have you been learning?
A.“Understanding the diversity of individuals God has created by asking them to educate you on their culture for understanding and clarity. Any resources on systemic racism, especially YouTube videos, to educate yourself and others. I’ve learned a lot of individuals in all races, including African Americans, DON’T understand systemic racism and its effect on equality.” Dominique
Q. Where do you find hope in our current times?
A. “I find hope in these times through the voices and connections of our younger generations. Sometimes, our peers and mentors can appear stuck in their ways. Being able to connect those who have yet to hit these points of hardness have always provided a beautiful opportunity to correct what the people who came before us and we may have broken.” -Wesley
A. “I find hope in knowing God is always in control. I see things changing that everyone thought was set in stone. For example, laws, policies, people, and representation against love are being torn down.”-Dominique
The Junior Board is reading Oneness Embraced, by Dr. Tony Evans, and they have heard from spiritual leaders on the topic of race and justice. These speakers have included Pastor Alton Hardy (Urban Hope Community Church) and Dr. Robert Record (Christ Health Center.) Conversations like these are the focus of CSM, and we hope that they are helping prepare our young leaders for times such as these and provide opportunities for our staff to continue learning and listening.