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Office of Social Justice News | April 2018

Host an Immigration Workshop!

Opinions tend to run high about immigration, but often our shared set of facts runs low. If we’re going to think faithfully about immigration, it’s important that we share an understanding of how immigration works today and what the Bible has to say about how we think about immigrants.

Church Between Borders is an interactive workshop that sparks thought and discussion for groups interested in engaging immigration from a biblical perspective. We’ve revamped our facilitator’s guide to ensure that you can confidently host and lead the workshop for your community. You do not have to be an immigration expert to facilitate — and OSJ is here to support you!

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DO JUSTICE

Muslim Headscarves: A Reformed Reflection

by Matthew Kaemingk

“Our Muslim neighbors are reminding us that the public square should no longer be dominated by a single vague Western consensus of consumerism and individualism. Instead, the public square should be a place where diverse faiths, ideologies, and ways of life publicly display, dialogue, and contest their competing visions of the common good.” Read more »

CREATION CARE

Share Your Creation-Care Worship Resource

We’re still looking for submissions for our crowdsourced collection of worship resources! If you enjoy writing and love God’s creation, consider creating and sharing a resource with us. We welcome prayers, liturgies, songs (text only or with music), visuals, and any creative worship tools from anyone—individuals, worship teams, small groups, children’s groups, and more. The deadline for submissions is Apr. 30, so start writing! Find more information here.

MIDDLE EAST PEACE

What’s Happening in Israel and Palestine

The Israeli occupation of Gaza once again grew violent this month. Thirty-two Palestinians were killed by the Israeli military during protests at the border. Protesters are seeking to bring attention to the Israeli blockade against Gaza, which began in 2007. Gaza is controlled internally by Hamas. Learn more about what is happening in Gaza.

QUICK TIP

Missing Updates?

Could you be missing our updates? Sometimes our email updates are misclassified as "spam" in people’s email folders. Or, if you are a Gmail user, you may find our updates in the "Promotions" tab instead of in your general inbox. Check out this helpful blog on The Network to learn how you can make sure our updates land in your inbox every time!

RESTORATIVE JUSTICE

Ride for Reform

Together with some friends, John Schuurman, a CRC deacon at Immanuel CRC in Hamilton, Ont., is organizing Ride for Reform, an event calling for criminal justice reform in Ontario. On Aug. 10, participants will cycle from Hamilton to Toronto with a letter to Ontario’s premier requesting several specific corrections-policy changes. Learn more about the letter and the team.

FROM OUR CRC PARTNERS

Canada Justice Survey

CRC justice ministries in Canada are surveying Canadian churches to learn about what they are already doing so that we can aim to support them well. If you attend a Christian Reformed church in Canada and you or someone from your church hasn’t already filled out our quick survey, find it at crcna.org/canadajusticesurvey.

—from CRC justice ministries in Canada

Take Down Barriers to Successful Resettlement

Can you imagine escaping a dangerous situation and beginning a new life in Canada . . . with $10,000 in debt? That's the situation for many refugees due to Canada's travel loans program. For just 40 cents per Canadian, we can change that. Take action here.

In Case You Missed It

  • Check out these upcoming restorative justice events: Calvin Prison Initiative Event in Hamilton and Brampton, Ont., and Speaking of Restorative Justice: What Shall We Do? in Grand Rapids, Mich.
  • Did you know that Synod 2017 asked churches to hold an annual Day of Justice beginning August 19, 2018? View ideas and resources at crcna.org/dayofjustice.
  • There’s a new advocacy workshop coming soon to help Canadian churches learn to do advocacy. Would you like to receive a copy of the Faith in Action: Practicing Biblical Advocacy resource when it’s ready? Sign up here.