By Molly Freibott
That was the subject line of the email I received from one of my favorite human beings and champion of inclusion- Reverend Patty Willis. We had just attended an Interfaith Group and I announced that Faith Bridge was looking to update our list of Inclusive Faith Organizations. Often after I announce this a hush falls across the room. I am sometimes left smiling into a room filled with very uncomfortable faith leaders hoping the announcement won't lead to an uncomfortable conversation;)
Prism's Faith Bridge Program began in 2017 when we started the 501c3. The mission is to address the very urgent need to provide inclusive and safe faith connections for the LGBTQ+ Community and allies. Prism's Team has worked to build an Inclusive Faith List that includes organizations across the spectrum including Jewish Synagogues, Baha'i Communities and Sufi Circles. Granite Peak Unitarian Universalist has continually been at the top of our list!
Before I even left the meeting that day I received an email from Reverend Patty reassuring me of what we already knew- that GPUU was as always- Inclusive and Affirming!
Granite Peak Unitarian Universalist Congregation is a Beacon of Hope, Inclusivity and Diversity in our Rural Northern Arizona Community.
Based on seven pillar principles which Unitarian Universalist congregations affirm and promote, UU Congregations draw on a variety of religious sources. To learn more about the Prescott Unitarian Universalist Congregation Click Here.
Their Mission Statement reads that they are a compassionate spiritual community that:
Nourishes the personal and spiritual growth of all ages
Shares our gifts
Promotes justice for all
Serves the world we live in
The Congregation is led by Reverend Patty Willis, author of the illustrated novel , The Village Above the Stars. She is a traveler, an avid advocate of migrants and social justice and leads the congregation in peace making and reconciliation. Learn more about Reverend Patty's Story Here
I found out about the Changemaker Workshops after a long afternoon at the Yavapai County Community Crisis Team (YC-CCRT) . I sat with first responders, police officers, detectives and community advocates brainstorming about how we could reach out to a very polarized community and have difficult conversations around some very pressing situations.
I came home to this flyer for a Changemaker Workshop- it was just what we were looking for!
Anna Flurry is Granite Peak Unitarian Universalist's Social Justice Coordinator and host of this excellent program. I was so excited just to hear that a Faith Organization had a Social Justice Coordinator, let alone a whole program for facilitating change in these difficult times!
I tried to think of how to describe this powerhouse of energy, passion and advocacy but I think it's better to use her own words.
"I am devoted to the power of love and connection, and I believe that activism built from a strong core of love, connection, and imagination allows us to grow new worlds rooted in our collective hopes and dreams for a liberated present. I envision my role as social justice coordinator as an opportunity to share the skills that I have learned, connect people and organizations with each other to better meet the needs of our communities, and support Prescott actions that will lead to lasting change." Anna Flurry
Learn more about Anna Flurry Here
My first session was "How can I make sure my event is accessible to everyone" which has been high on my list of importance for years. I was so impressed! I have an ASL Interpreter help me sometimes at workshops and we were both just trying to keep up with all the excellent information coming our way. We had to meet twice afterward just to discuss the material and to look up the new vocabulary words we learned in the ASL Dictionary!
This session was packed with information and resources and I immediately knew I had to share it with everyone working hard for change and growth in our community. I was able to use and apply some of the new perspectives and suggestions right away and refer back to the notes as a resource often.
"How can I make sure my event is accessible to everyone?"
"How can I make a Difference when it feels like the whole world is falling apart?"
"How to get people to join the movement and Keep Coming Back: Organizing, Recruiting and Volunteer Culture"
"How to talk to People you REALLY don't agree with: When there's more at stake than winning an argument"
"How Do We Stop from Tearing Ourselves Apart? Resolving Conflict in our Communities with Curiosity and Nonviolence Part 1 of 2
It's like she's reading our minds...these are exactly the situations we all face every day! Molly Freibott
You can register for the next session HERE
For more information contact Anna Flurry at firstname.lastname@example.org or go to the Granite Peak Unitarian Universalist Website at www.prescottuu.org
Your contribution will help to support our Mission to provide Emergency Resources, Housing, Food, Shelter and Suicide Prevention Training to Yavapai County’s LGBTQ+ and underserved populations.