July 8, 2020
Thank You for Your Advocacy Work!
On May 21, Bishop Kevin Strickland moderated the webinar Becoming the Body of Christ Where All Bodies are Valued:A conversation around the ELCA's resolution to condemn White Supremacy, to give voice to the cries for justice for Ahmaud Arbery, who had been murdered in late February, while jogging in Brunswick Georgia. The webinar included a “call to action,” of contacting elected officials in Georgia, to ask for the passage of HB426, a Hate Crimes Bill, which had been passed in the State House, but had not received a hearing in the State Senate.
Certainly the deaths of Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, and Rayshad Brooks, in the immediate aftermath of the reports of the videos of the Arbery Murder, added momentum to the public cries for passing the legislation. We may never know what impact members of the ELCA Southeastern Synod, who made phone calls, sent emails, and snail-mail communications, had on the passage of HB426, but we do know that we are called to do this work, even if we know we are climbing a steep hill of opposition.
Advocacy is about being the voice of the voiceless, and being a voice of justice. There are many scripture verses in the Old Testament and New Testament that bear witness to the People of God acting on behalf of the Kingdom of God. There are also baptismal vows “…to proclaim Christ through word and deed, care for others and the world God made, and work for justice and peace.” This is work that every Christian is called to do.
On June 26, 2020, Georgia Governor, Brian Kemp, signed HB426 into law. Here is a link to thank the Governor: https://gov.georgia.gov/contact-us/constituent-services.
If you would like to sign up for notifications for future Advocacy opportunities for the many issues the Southeastern Synod Advocacy Policy Council Addresses, you may do so here: http://se-email.brtapp.com/subscribe. Be sure to select the Advocacy list.
Assistant to the Bishop, Director of Advocacy