Six Things to Consider Concerning a US Strike Against Syria

The following is a statement from President Marvin A. McMickle originally written to be shared among the American Baptist Churches USA (ABCUSA) as points for consideration as military action in Syria is considered.

As Christians we are not exempt from having an opinion or voicing a position concerning the possibility of our nation launching a unilateral attack against Syria over its alleged use of chemical weapons. We cannot view this possibility solely through the eyes of US foreign policy or US national security interests. The Lord of the church is not an American; Christ is sovereign Lord over all of creation. Christ has as much love for the people of the Middle East as for the people of the American Midwest. What action is really in the best interest of our brothers and sisters in Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and all the other nations in that region that may be impacted if any military action taken by this country results in an escalation of what is essential a civil war?
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Workplace Diversity and Private Construction in Rochester

Recent focus has been brought to the issue of minority hiring and workplace diversity on public sector projects in and around Rochester by the local paper. Progress in that direction is an important step in the right direction. That being said, I remind this community that equal if not more attention must be given to the hiring of minority workers on private sector projects as well. Whether one looks at construction for grocery stores, hospitals, universities, business parks, or corporate offices, there is an obvious absence of diversity on those sites. This is 2013, and the absence of women and ethnic minorities on so many conspicuous construction sites is an affront to the history of Rochester as a progressive community. We should and we must do better!

Episcopal Bishop for the Armed Services Visits the Hill

The Rt. Rev. James "Jay" Magness visited the Hill as part of his visit to Rochester, NY. Magness is the Episcopal Bishop Suffragan for the Armed Services and Federal Ministries. He has pursued a concern for providing support for the many challenges veterans face upon returning from deployment.

Accompanied by the Rt. Rev. Prince Singh, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Rochester, Magness came to the Hill to learn about the new Andrews Veterans House, which is a collaboration of the Veterans Outreach Center, Tempro Development Corp. and CRCDS. He toured two of the apartments and met with residents, who are veterans who experienced homelessness upon returning from combat.

A dinner was held the previous night at Christ Church on East Avenue in Rochester. About a dozen Rochester-area religious leaders attended. (Read more about the event here.)

Magness is himself a Vietnam veteran.

Unite Rochester Visit to *Ministry on the Margins* Class Sparks Conversation

mooreclass1Last Wednesday, Jane Sutter, Editor of Community Partnerships / Niche Content at The Democrat and Chronicle, attended Barbara Moore's class "Ministry on the Margins."

The visit was a research opportunity for a project at the paper she leads, Unite Rochester. Pres. McMickle has worked closely with Ms. Sutter on the feature, which seeks to address ongoing issues of race, identity and injustice here in Rochester.

Learn more about Unite Rochester at their website.

Toronto Pilgrims Come to CRCDS as Part of *Sacred Space* Tour of Rochester

The Pilgrimage of Sacred Spaces comes to Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School tomorrow morning to experience the Hill as a spiritual space.

The Pilgrimage is led by Rev. Peter Holmes, who is the Minister of the Congregation at Yorkminister Park Baptist Church in Toronto, Canada. Driven largely by curiosity, Holmes began organizing tours of Toronto's sacred, spiritual or religious places eight years ago to explore the many different faith traditions that are practiced there. With the success of the Toronto tours, the Pilgrimages have ventured to other cities, such as Buffalo and Pittsburgh.

  • WHAT: “The Pilgrimage of Sacred Spaces” Comes to CRCDS
  • DATE: Thursday, May 2, 2013
  • TIME: 9:15 am
  • PLACE: Samuel Colgate Memorial Chapel, CRCDS Campus

The Rochester tour will survey the architecture of the Samuel Colgate Memorial Chapel on the CRCDS campus, a historic worship area with original stained glass windows depicting the history of the American Baptist Church, beginning with its founder, Roger Williams. Its construction was funded, in part, by John D. Rockefeller.

Nearly 20 other sites in the city will be visited during the four-day tour, including Asbury First United Methodist Church, First Unitarian and Temple B'rith Kodesh. Each stop is an hour long and gives pilgrims the opportunity to learn about the history of the building as well as time to reflect in silence within it.

The Canadian organist William Maddox will perform the historic organ in the Chapel as part of the group's visit.