As many of you know our June meeting is traditionally the Juneteenth celebration of the slaves in Texas finally getting word of the Emancipation Proclamation. I am sorry that I need to cancel the meal this year. I’ve been so engaged in the planning for Dr. Vincent Harding’s memorials and family remembrances that I have delayed the planning for Juneteenth too long. John Ferguson will be out of town. And I am pretty exhausted. So we will start our summer break a month earlier this year.
I want to thank all of you for being part of a great season of enlightening and deeply meaningful conversations and exploration of race. I am also grateful for the new voices that have joined the discussions this year. We will continue in September with another series of challenging topics. This month I will be attending A Gathering of Leaders Conference in Oakland that focuses on boys and men of color. I expect to give you a full report. See http://www.agatheringofleaders.org/#movement for more information.
In the meantime, I recommend taking a look at a recent issue of The Atlantic Magazine which has a compelling piece, “The Case for Reparations,” by Ta-Nehisi Coates. It is a great review of history that connects the dots of oppression in America to today’s reality. You can read it online at: http://www.theatlantic.com/features/archive/2014/05/the-case-for-reparations/361631/
I also want you to know that a memorial service for Dr. Harding is scheduled for July 25-26. It will be a two part event with the first evening a community sharing and reception. The next day will be a more formal ecumenical, multicultural celebration of his life and accomplishments. In August there will be a similar celebration in Atlanta. I will send out a message and post details on our website when we finish the details.
Have a great summer!