Biblical Justice Series
There is a sense of urgency to respond out of our Christian faith to racial injustice in a new way, but we recognize a meaningful response comes out of listening. God is always doing a new thing. St. George's has prepare several programmatic offerings over the next several months — these are opportunities to listen together to how God is working today toward racial reconciliation, and to imagine how we come alongside that work of restoration in Nashville.
Anna: A Short Film Presentation
With William G. Thomas III and Kwakiutl Dreher present their short film, Anna. Based on true events, Anna is the story of one woman's quest for freedom and family. It is an incredibly creative and collaborative work that tells a story that research had previously gotten wrong.
Biblical Justice & Christian Witness
The Rev. Nicole Foster will lead us in three important conversations over the next several months. Please make plans to attend online and engage this important topic with St. George's.
Wednesday, Jan. 20 at 7:00pm
Session 2: Ancient and Modern Examples of Racial Justice
Wednesday, Feb. 10 at 7:00pm
Session 3: What Christian Witness Calls Us to Today
The Rev. Nicole Foster is the TV. Host of The Hippie Theologian. She is a Doctor of Ministry Candidate at Trinity School for Ministry, has a Master of Divinity from Redeemer Theological Seminary and a B.A. in History from Southern Methodist University. She blogs for several ministry outlets, and is a teacher and speaker, focusing on the Old Testament and public theology.
The Portrait of Congressman John Lewis
With Michael Shane Neal
January - Date & Time TBA
Internationally renowned artist and award-winning portrait painter Michael Shane Neal is no stranger to St. George’s Church. He will be joining us to discuss his experience painting the portrait of civil rights giant and former Congressman John Lewis who passed away this summer. This portrait was recently purchased for permanent display at the National Portrait Gallery.
Pilgrimage to Montgomery, Alabama
With St. George’s Clergy
We will embark on a learning pilgrimage to Montgomery, Alabama, to visit the National Memorial for Peace and Justice, the Legacy Museum, meet with Equal Justice Initiative staff, and visit other historic civil rights locations in the area.
The Art of Ted Jones
April - Dates TBA
Adjacent to Legacy Hall, the new Bradford Gallery will feature the work of nationally acclaimed local artist, Ted Jones. Jones draws his inspiration from the wealth of human experience, specifically the Black experience, and, more recently, Old and New Testament subjects.
Letter from the Rector
October 30, 2020
In this tense cultural season of turmoil and division and just days away from a highly contentious national election, I encourage us to be praying for a peaceful and uncontested outcome as well as for clarity that Jesus Christ represents our highest allegiance and deepest hope.
This year in our national life has also invited believers to renewed self-examination and thoughtful recommitment to our baptismal calling as those who “strive for justice and peace among all people, and to respect the dignity of every human being” (The Book of Common Prayer, page 305). For months, we have felt the heaviness of racial tensions across our land including in our beloved city.
As a politically diverse congregation, we may not all agree on precise personal or policy responses to repair our past and heal our present with regard to racial injustice. However, I trust we are united renewing our Christian call to be agents of reconciliation (2 Corinthians 5:18). As for myself, I know that I have often fallen short of my calling to seek justice for all “by what I have done and by what I have left undone.” With so many, I have been praying for humility, wisdom, and courage responding to this present moment.
Thus, I am grateful to announce upcoming programmatic offerings months-in-the-planning aimed at helping us be constructive, proactive agents of healing and justice. Please see an outline of programs below featuring special guests whose stories and teachings may foster deeper discernment about even more impactful service to our community so “barriers which divide us may crumble, suspicions disappear, and hatreds cease” (BCP, page 823).
Also, I give thanks for the varied and impactful ways our parish community and members have long been committed to deepening relationships across the breadth of our city, including the St. George’s Enterprise Ministry, our partnership with Jones Paideia Elementary School in North Nashville, The Episcopal School of Nashville, among other ministries.
Again, I acknowledge a diversity of perspectives and political loyalties present in our large parish membership. More broadly, deep cultural divisions have been exacerbated by this especially contentious election season, prolonged stress about coronavirus, ongoing economic uncertainty, and reactions to protests that turn violent. However, I ask you to recall once more that of far more significance is our unity in Christ. I pray we may more and more embody the character of gracious fellowship and courageous mission that can bless our fragmented and disunited society. The Holy Spirit is power to offer a counter-witness to the distemper of our times and the prevailing language of denunciation. And in our commitment to practical work together around racial reconciliation at St. George’s, we trust that in seeking solidarity with the pain in the African American community, we will find there Jesus himself preparing to bring new life and fresh hope for us all.
Yours in Christ,
The Rev. Dr. R. Leigh Spruill