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Alternate Activity 2: Our Work (20 minutes), Workshop 2: Prophetic, Parallel, and Institutional

In "Resistance and Transformation," a Tapestry of Faith program

Materials for Activity

  • Newsprint, markers, and tape
  • Optional: Newsprint list of your congregation's social justice projects (Workshop 1, Alternate Activity 1)

Preparation for Activity

  • Create a chart on newsprint with three columns, titled Prophetic, Parallel, and Institutional. Post the chart.
  • Optional: Post the newsprint list of social justice projects.

Description of Activity

If you generated a newsprint list of your congregation's social justice activities in Workshop 1, invite the group to reexamine that list using the framework of the three strategies introduced in this workshop. Go through the list one by one, asking the group to put each item in one of the columns. If new examples come to mind, feel free to add them.

If you have not yet generated such a list, invite participants to brainstorm a list of all the social justice activities connected with the congregation. Include activities explicitly sponsored by the congregation, activities that individuals undertake with the support of the congregation, and activities done by members of the congregation that are outside the scope of the congregation's social justice program. As activities are named, place them in one of the three columns.

Encourage the group to reflect on how these examples might fit in more than one column, or how they might be seen as complementary to one another. Are there individuals or groups using different strategies to achieve the same goal? For example, a Unitarian Universalists for the Ethical Treatment of Animals group that sponsors a monthly vegan potluck is employing a "parallel" strategy, while an individual in the congregation who works for animal rights may have preached a sermon calling for a "prophetic" stance on medical testing involving animals.

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Last updated on Saturday, December 10, 2011.

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