Scripture reminds us that Jesus came to bring good news to the poor, to liberate the oppressed, and to release the captives. We can be a part of actively changing the larger systems that are hurting people by putting our faith into action. We practice justice through policy change as a way to live out this call.
Take Action to End Commercial Sexual Exploitation
One of our partners in ministry, Veronica’s Voice, has the goal of creating policy-driven changes to end commercial sexual exploitation. Currently, they are working to change the language regarding sex crimes in Kansas through Senate Bill 59. This bill modifies the crimes of selling sexual relations, promoting the sale of sexual relations and buying sexual relations by changing terminology from “sexual relations” to “a sex act.” Right now, it is sitting in the Kansas Senate without a vote, and we need your help to bring attention to it.
Veronica’s Voice believes that commercial sexual exploitation is not “relational,” which implies equality and mutuality. It is a transaction, and an abuse of power and control. Words have powerful influence on our culture and behavior, and that is why it is necessary that this change is made. It is our responsibility to be a community that supports those who are vulnerable. If you are a resident of Kansas, please consider contacting your Senator to ask them to keep this bill moving forward.
Rev. Chenda Innis Lee
Part of living out our faith is a strong commitment to racial equity. St. Paul’s is committed to a holistic approach to antiracism. We are in it for the long haul. We are learning, listening, neighboring, and advocating through policy change to live into the truth of our welcome statement to celebrate the worth, dignity, and gifts of every person as a child of God. Here are some ways to practice racial justice as part of your faith journey. We also have studies and activities available specifically for kids and youth.
Stand with Clergy of Color
This petition calls on the Council of Bishops in the UMC to address the white supremacy harming clergy of color serving all-white churches in our denomination. Read Rev. Chenda Innis Lee’s story and consider adding your name to support this call to action.
Get involved with MORE2
While we are not an official congregation member, we are actively partnering with MORE2 – the Metro Organization for Racial and Economic Equity.
In 2020, we partnered with them to do Voter Engagement phone banking. Through the Clergy Caucus and monthly Issues2Action gatherings, we are working on local policy change. We are now looking at Medicaid Expansion, Safe & Welcoming Wyandotte, and Criminal Justice reform.
If you’d like to be an active participant in monthly Issues2Action gatherings, contact Pastor Lora for more information.
Request a Black Lives Matter yard sign
Join over 60 St. Paul’s families who are displaying Black Lives Matter signs in their yards in solidarity, support, and love for our neighbors.
St. Paul’s celebrates LGBTQ+ people at all levels of leadership in our congregation. We are actively engaged in policy change work within the denomination, as well as working for full inclusion locally in our communities. Members of St. Paul’s were part of organizing and advocating for Non-Discrimination Ordinances in Johnson County, KS to pass in the fall of 2019.
Pastor Lora co-leads the Great Plains UMCNext movement with these four commitments:
We believe these commitments are essential to a hope-filled future for the global Methodist movement as we make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.
1. We long to be passionate followers of Jesus Christ, committed to a Wesleyan vision of Christianity, anchored in scripture and informed by tradition, experience and reason as we live a life of personal piety and social holiness.
2. We commit to resist evil, injustice and oppression in all forms and toward all people and build a church which affirms the full participation of all ages, nations, races, classes, cultures, gender identities, sexual orientations, and abilities.
3. We reject the Traditional Plan approved at General Conference 2019 as inconsistent with the gospel of Jesus Christ and will resist its implementation.
4. We will work to eliminate discriminatory language and the restrictions and penalties in the Discipline regarding LGBTQ persons. We affirm the sacred worth of LGBTQ persons, celebrate their gifts, and commit to being in ministry together.
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