by Jennifer Copeland
Eighty years ago faith leaders of NC stood up and cried out against the injustice of segregation and racial discrimination. The NC Council of Churches was born. 60 years ago Rosa Parks sat down and assumed her place of equality on a Montgomery city bus. The American Civil Rights movement became national news.
Today I point to the twin towers of Biblical imperative and Constitutional rights, two very different documents that both proclaim the worth of every single person. Scripture assures us the image of God is imprinted on every human face, regardless of nationality or ethnicity. The Constitution affirms that human, created in the image of God, the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
Because the Bible tells us we matter and because the Constitution guarantees our freedom, the NC Council of Churches is joining voices across this state who will work diligently to see that every person who can vote is registered to vote and every person who is registered to vote has the chance to vote.
With our partners, the NC Council of Churches is focused on voter registration and voter turnout. We’re asking our denominational leaders to remind their congregational members of the rights and responsibilities of having the privilege to vote in the democracy that is the United States of America.
The Rev. Jennifer E. Copeland, Ph.D. is Executive Director of the North Carolina Council of Churches. One way to find out more about the NC Council of Church’s work at www.ncchurches.org or 919-828-6501.
Another way to find out more would be to attend their upcoming meeting in Charlotte. Aleta Payne, their Deputy Executive Director, extends this invitation:
Please join us at Myers Park Baptist Church to meet the Rev. Dr. Jennifer E. Copeland, the NC Council of Churches’ new executive director, and to learn about new and expanded initiatives the Council is offering statewide. We’ll bring plenty of sample resources and let you know how to access additional materials; all are free.
Our time together will start at 10 and end by noon on Thursday, March 17. Light refreshments will be offered. Our thanks to the Rev. Ben Boswell and everyone at MPBC for their hospitality. The church is located at 1900 Queens Road in Charlotte.
Throughout the Council’s 80-plus year history, North Carolina’s Methodist conferences have played a crucial role. Current board members from the Western Conference are Betty Jo Hardy and the Rev. Robb Webb. Past and present leadership includes the Rev. Owen Peeler, the Rev. Arnetta Beverly, the Rev. Jim Ferree, Sydnor Thompson, and Brenda Wills.
An RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org would be helpful so that we bring enough materials with us, but feel free to join us even if you do not have the opportunity to respond.