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  • Writer's pictureRev. Joel L. Tolbert

Headed South

This coming week, Jill and I are joining other adults from this church and community and youth from Minary's Dream Alliance on a "Civil Rights Bus Tour." We will go through Selma, Montgomery, and Atlanta, visiting sites and museums connected to the long, hard struggle for civil rights and against personal and systemic racism in our country.

Pray for us, please.

As a child of the South, I'm sensitive to the presence of racism all around us. I've heard it and seen it throughout my life. I saw it in schools. I heard it at home. It happened in college. It happened in the business world. It still happens. I've run away scared from it, silently stood still beside it, and occasionally risked resisting it with my words and body. Our country has made incremental progress despite the constant resistance and thanks to great sacrifices. Yet, the ripples and waves of former and current racism continue to crash.

As Jill and I travel back through states and cities where we've lived before, we will likely see new things and old things in new ways. I am anticipating feelings of guilt for my complicity, frustration for my inability to make change, and responsibility to keep trying.

Pray for our hearts. Pray for our good health. Pray for powerful new relationships. Pray for vulnerability. We will pray for y'all while we go, and bring you back a report of the trip.

Blessings, laughter, and loving be yours,

Rev. Joel L. Tolbert

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