A Matter of Faith: A Presby Podcast

Episode 7: Social Media, Protest?, & Does Faith and Politics Mix?

April 15, 2021 Simon Doong and Lee Catoe Season 1 Episode 7
A Matter of Faith: A Presby Podcast
Episode 7: Social Media, Protest?, & Does Faith and Politics Mix?
Chapters
A Matter of Faith: A Presby Podcast
Episode 7: Social Media, Protest?, & Does Faith and Politics Mix?
Apr 15, 2021 Season 1 Episode 7
Simon Doong and Lee Catoe

Questions of the Week: 

  • I am having a disagreement with someone on social media on matters of faith and social issues.  I also see other folks posting and commenting about things that bother me.  How should I handle this?  How can I navigate these situations as a Christian in the era of social media and technology?
  • I support the messages and intentions of groups like Black Lives Matter, advocating for justice and equality.  Some members of my church attended a BLM protest over the summer, but I didn't go because I wasn't comfortable participating in a protest or a march.  It's not really my scene.  I was also worried about violence occurring (not necessarily from protestors, just any form of unexpected violence).  Is this okay? Are there other ways for me to support causes that I care about?

Special Guest:
Christian Brooks, Representative for Domestic Issues, Office of Public Witness, Presbyterian Church (USA)

Guest Question:
Why does the Church have an advocacy office in DC? Should the church even be involved in politics? Do congress members actually listen to the faith community?

Resource Roundup with Beth Olker

Show Notes Transcript

Questions of the Week: 

  • I am having a disagreement with someone on social media on matters of faith and social issues.  I also see other folks posting and commenting about things that bother me.  How should I handle this?  How can I navigate these situations as a Christian in the era of social media and technology?
  • I support the messages and intentions of groups like Black Lives Matter, advocating for justice and equality.  Some members of my church attended a BLM protest over the summer, but I didn't go because I wasn't comfortable participating in a protest or a march.  It's not really my scene.  I was also worried about violence occurring (not necessarily from protestors, just any form of unexpected violence).  Is this okay? Are there other ways for me to support causes that I care about?

Special Guest:
Christian Brooks, Representative for Domestic Issues, Office of Public Witness, Presbyterian Church (USA)

Guest Question:
Why does the Church have an advocacy office in DC? Should the church even be involved in politics? Do congress members actually listen to the faith community?

Resource Roundup with Beth Olker

00:03 – Simon Doong

Hello, and welcome to a matter of faith of presby podcast, the podcast where we respond to your questions and comments on issues of faith, social justice, and church life. Don't be afraid to write in and ask your question. Because if it matters to you, it matters to us. And it just might be a matter of faith,

 

00:21 – Lee Catoe

whether it be faith in God, faith and others or faith in yourself. We are brought to you by the Presbyterian peacemaking program and unfound, the interactive journal on Christian social justice for the Presbyterian Church USA. I am your host, Lee Catoe.

 

00:39 – Simon Doong

And I'm your host Simon Doong

 

00:41 – Lee Catoe

Without further ado, let's dive into today's questions.

 

00:46 – Simon Doong

So Lee, our first question for today is really relevant for today's technologically inclined and social media driven world. The question says, “I am having a disagreement with someone on social media on matters of faith and social issues. I also see other folks posting and commenting about things that bother me, how should I handle this? How can I navigate these situations as a Christian and the era of social media and technology?” Well, how can they handle this? Lee?

 

01:22 – Lee Catoe

Yeah, I see this all the time. We see this all the time now. And it's even in I mean, we're seeing this in like national Facebook groups, and like not even just family kind of thing. Because we're all on the internet. And we're all just looking at our screens all the time because of pandemic. And that's slowly changing, but it is hard to navigate because you because in some instances, you do want to say something you kind of want to call out if someone is speaking about hate, or speaking, you know, and very awful ways to someone or a group of people. If there's a racist comment or comment about someone's sexuality, or gender expression, all these types of things, there is something to say about saying something to someone to call them out. But I do think it gets very weird on social media, and technology. And I do think, because we're in the era of trolls, and all of these types of people that this is like their job is to instigate social media arguments, it takes a lot of intentionality behind what you're going to say, what you're going to put out, like, why are you making this comment is it meant to make you feel better about yourself for like this quit, you know, and we've mentioned this on the podcast before, isn't meant to just kind of feel that immediate need for you to, to call someone out or to respond, because it makes you feel good. And I've been guilty of that, and the social media world, we have really just kind of been consumed by it. And we've kind of used it to air our, our feelings about stuff to really kind of express who we are and what we're feeling. And we're not always prepared about what's going to come back at us. Nor were the comments and I think each platform is very different Simon, kind of walk in the circles, and you just never know, depending on the call Twitter, like, just like the wilderness of social media just never know, it does take a very intentional way of interaction. And I do think that speaks to as a person of faith, it's like as people of faith, are we just meant to kind of react to for self fulfillment, or is our reaction more prescriptive? route calls type reaction that isn't so you know, let's, let's just jump and and make this decision and, and comment. So I will I do say it? As a person. I think that takes a lot more discernment. Because this is also sent out into the public. That's another aspect. What do you think, Simon?

 

04:06 – Simon Doong

Well, I want to pick up where you left off talking about are you doing if you choose to engage? Are you doing it just to make yourself feel better? Because that really gets to a core question about what is the reason that you're choosing to engage this person on this comment on this topic? Is it about having a genuine conversation? Or is it about proving a point? Or is it about making yourself feel better? And I think a further question to follow with that is what do you gain by engaging this person because if you engage with them, there is potential for changing someone's mind maybe showing someone a different perspective. And that's there's some value to that you also might be engaging simply to try to one up someone and again, just kind of prove your point. And that's up to you about whether you decide that you know whether it's worth it. And I think you can also add a question about what could be lost by engaging this person online, you could lose time that you spend responding to them, you could lose the energy and the effort and the emotional energy that you put into it. And even if it is someone that, you know, if you're engaging in a heated argument online, maybe your relationship might actually be called into question because it's hard to have really intimate, nuanced discussions on social media platforms. And that leads to sort of another point, which is, would it be more productive to just have this conversation offline, or at least in a, in private messages as opposed to a more public forum, because even if you know, someone, you don't know necessarily how your written words will be interpreted, and you reduce the chance for miscommunication by engaging offline instead of online. And if you don't have a relationship with someone, then there isn't that foundation of trust that's been built up to sort of help navigate, you know, situations of miscommunication or misunderstanding or disagreement. So you there's a lot of questions there to think about. I would say, when we think about a platform like Twitter, it's really hard to communicate a full nuanced perspective in 280 characters. I think, if Jesus were alive today, maybe he could do it, where normal people, normal humans, and it's really hard to get your message across in that in that limited number of characters. But as Christians, we are called to love each other, and to love others and to be respectful. And don't say anything online, that you wouldn't say to someone in person. Because that's part of our you know, what we've talked about in previous discussions about people saying things that are, as they're being trolls or saying things that are hateful, that they would never say, if they were to look you in the face and say that, so don't be that person, be better.

 

07:01 – Lee Catoe

I do think there is sometimes a space for first saying things that I think need to be heard. And social media is a great way to put that out there. And I have always appreciative of some things that I've read either through Facebook or Twitter or seen on Instagram and Instagram as another way where you kind of see art and a prophetic voice intersect. And I do think there is a difference between being very prophetic, saying what needs to be said in response to what is happening in the world through social media, and then like getting into an argument that isn't very constructive. And it's, and it's not going anywhere. So I do think there is a balance. And I think social media can also give us, you know, positive ways to do this work. Instagram is a great way through arts and graphics to really be prophetic, and get a message out there. And to spur on action. I think that's another thing that I hope social media that we can really think about social media are critically about is how do our words spur action? And how do they actually change things instead of speaking in a vacuum, which I think can happen a lot. I think it happens a lot in the church and all ideologies and theologies that we only speak to the people that that kind of agree. And if we don't, then we want to kind of jab, which I think in many ways that is needed, in some ways, and depending on who's posting, but I do think, yeah, social media, it can be a double-edged kind of thing, because it can be used for, for a lot of good. But can it can also I mean, we've seen it with false information. We've seen it with trolling, we've seen that with all of these things that it's just kind of perpetuated. And now we don't even know we have to do the work to know what the truth is now because of it all. So I do think we have to take all of that in consideration. That's not to say don't ever use it, because I think it is important specifically, that is the world we're in. And Simon and I were kind of raised in that. I mean, I remember when it first started. I mean, I remember when it first started happening Facebook and all this, so he kind of just kind of grew up with it. And it's been interesting to see how it has shaped culture, how it shaped conflict, because some people will just get on and say what they want to say but never say that to you in person. And yeah, that is a problem. But I do think it can be used in many creative ways that can spur action and spur change. That is that is good. So social media has its own ballgame these days.

 

09:56 – Simon Doong

Yeah. And again, if someone has posted or commented something that you really don't agree with or that I guess there's different ways to have an a reaction to something that someone posts, there's disagreement, or if they're posting say about a specific group of people and you feel personally attacked by that, or harmed by that, there's something to be said for that. And you can make that known. But just remember that there are other ways to engage this person that does not have to be online for all others to see. There's a place for commenting and responding, but be strategic, be respectful and be loving.

 

10:39 – Lee Catoe

So I think it's time to go to our next question. And the question we got sent in for this week. Another question is “I support the messages and intentions of groups like Black Lives Matter, advocating for justice and equality? Some members of my church attended a Black Lives Matter protest over the summer, but I didn't go because I wasn't comfortable participating in a protest or a march. It's not really my thing. I was also worried about violence occurring, not necessarily from protesters just any form of unexpected violence. Is this okay? Are there other ways for me to support causes that I care about?” What do you say, Simon?

 

11:31 – Simon Doong

I say that protest is one form of advocacy. It is a valid form of advocacy. But it's also not the only one. And it's okay to not be comfortable with protesting, especially if you are concerned about violence, because that's a legitimate concern. We are all parts of the body of Christ and the church, we all have different skills, different talents, and different abilities. And some of them alone themselves really well to holding them a megaphone or microphone, and protesting out in the street. And standing up for what we believe in in that way. Some of us have other types of gifts that lend themselves to a different type of advocacy, or a different type of service. And that's just as valuable and just as valid. So I would say, figure out what is unique to you, and your skill set and your interests. Are you a writer? Are you an artist? Are you good at organizing people or organizing processes, things, documents, maybe you're good at emails, all of those things are valid to making change happen, even if they're not quite as public or, or in, in the public eye or in one's face. So you've got various other means to to express your desire for justice. What do you think Lee?

 

12:56 – Lee Catoe

Yeah, I think I echo all of that not everybody is called to protest. And specifically now in a pandemic that makes the decisions a whole have add a whole other layer to making that decision, whether or not the protest or to go to a march. And for me, that was a big, that was a big factor in the decisions that are made during specifically last summer, when there were a lot of protests happening after the death of the murder of George Floyd and Breanna Taylor, what are those factors and that decision making, but I also think that it is a good opportunity, if, if you've never been to a protest, or I've never been to a march to kind of put yourself out there, I think sometimes we always see protests on television, and we see marches and in some ways media can kind of skew those things that, you know, they focus on some of the violence that that has happened. But in reality, protests can be very beautiful, meaningful experiences that are framed sometimes, you know, and a spiritual, religious type of way that can be very beautiful, but they're not always like that. And I think regardless, it is a it is something that people should experience being together with a bunch of people that are speaking out against injustice, and in some ways, it's a form of lament, and it's a communal way of really expressing anger and sadness and grief, all with the people who are kind of experiencing that together. And so we should really think about the things that make us uncomfortable too, and maybe pushing ourselves to attend it. You don't have to be right in it. Maybe stay on the outside and just observe but I think it is a good one. Way to, to open ourselves up and experience a protest because I don't think you'll come out of it, the same person as you went in. And I think that's something that that we all should should do at some point. Now, if you have a problem with crowds and things like that, maybe that isn't something and again, everybody has their own form of protest, and everybody has their own form of, of how to dismantle injustice. But at the same time, I think sometimes we should push or push ourselves to do something that makes us uncomfortable, and protest are one of those things. But yes, again, it's not the only way.

 

15:41 – Simon Doong

I totally agree. Don't be afraid to step out of your comfort zone, because you never know what you'll learn. I also want to sort of answer the second part of the question, which was about “Are there other ways for me to support causes that I care about?” And so some of the other ways that we mentioned earlier are using your gifts, to be writing, art organizing, things like that. But there's also other ways to support causes and movements that that you really care about, for example, on social media, it's very easy to like something, to share something to retweet something, this is not the only thing that that we should be doing. But it's certainly a part. It's a way to raise awareness, to educate and to spread the word about work that's being done in our world. There's also financial ways you can financially give and contribute to causes that you care about that. Not everyone has the privilege and the means to be able to do that. But if you but if you do, that is a valid way that you can express that type of witness. And of course, there is prayer as well, praying for peaceful demonstrations, praying for demonstrations and protests, and movements that lead to real change that matters as well. It's not only about thoughts and prayers, but thoughts and prayers are a part of the movement and a part of the process for change. So don't forget about those as well. And then there's also the element of sort of personal accountability, particularly since this person mentioned Black Lives Matter, issues of racial justice, there's a level of personal accountability and personal work that you can do as an individual, you can educate yourself more by reading books on racism, and on trying to make yourself more aware, you can engage yourself in conversation, and you can engage others in conversation to see what other people think, to have your ideas challenged, and to also challenge other people's ideas on the subject. So that's another way that's very much more personal, but also just as valid, because tackling issues and addressing issues like racial justice, they're very big, and they're systemic, but they also have that that individual personal level, an element to it, and you can work on that. So that's something else that you can do if you want to try to support these causes without necessarily attending a protest.

 

18:08 – Lee Catoe

And I'm glad you mentioned the concept of privilege. And I think that's something else, we always have to remind ourselves. And I don't know who wrote this, but I know for white people, people who are privileged, and when it comes to protest, in many ways, protests are a way for people of privilege to put themselves in spaces of, of risk and of, of kind of not being, you know, in a privileged spot to put themselves in a space that is in solidarity with those who are less privileged, those who are oppressed and to enter really kind of have representation there, just show that you are using your privilege to make a difference. And now you don't necessarily have to do that in a protest. And there are different ways that that can manifest within the work of the work of dismantling injustice. But I do think having a posture to say if you are a person of privilege, how can I use this privilege to make change? And, and that can manifest in so many different ways. So I'm glad you mentioned Simon about privilege, because I think that's the one thing that protest do is that it shouldn't always have to be people of color, queer folk, people on the margins, people who are not privileged, it shouldn't always have to be those folks that are in the front lines that are marching, it shouldn't always have to be that and so I think in many ways, people of privilege are going to have to start asking themselves the question of how do we use our privilege so that people on the margins don't have to put themselves in danger. And so that's another dynamic of protest but again, It's asking the question of how do you use your privilege to make a change. And we saw that and we continue to see that through creative ways. And I think that's also something that we are going to have to continue to talk about how do we use creativity and Simon he mentioned art and music and all of these different ways that you can create change that is different. I mean, we have social media campaigns now. And, and, and graphic design and social entrepreneurship. That is, that has happened all throughout this year, and said, there are so many different ways, but yeah, if, if you've never been to a protest, I would encourage you to go to one, just to get the full experience because I don't think you get that on in the media. 

 

20:53 - Lee Catoe

So today, we are really blessed to have Christian Brooks with us to answer a question that was sent in and Christian Brooks is the representative for domestic issues for the Office of Public witness for the Presbyterian Church USA, which is office is in Washington, DC, and they do some awesome things. So check them out, if you can, as the Office of Public witness for the pcusa. And we are really grateful to have you, Christian.

 

21:27 – Christian Brooks

Thank you. Thank you. I'm so happy to be here. I didn't know this question was sent in now. But the pressure is on now.

 

21:34 – Lee Catoe

Yes, indeed. So the question is, why does the church have an advocacy office in DC? Should the church even be involved in politics? Do Congress members actually listen to the faith community? The floor is yours, Christian?

 

21:54 – Christian Brooks

Yeah, yeah. These are some really good questions. And you know what, these are questions that we get quite often these questions as well as the separation of church and state question. I'm happy that whomever sent this question in, sent it in so that we can clear the air on some on some different things. So. Okay, let's talk about should the church be involved in political issues or policy issues? Short answer? Yes. Absolutely. Why? Well, one, the church has always been involved in governing in some sense, right. When the United States was founded after the American Revolution, there were Presbyterians who signed the Declaration of Independence, john Witherspoon and I believe 11 other Presbyterian signed the Declaration of Independence. There were Presbyterians who helped frame the Constitution of the United States. Right. So this idea that church and state has never been connected is a false understanding. That is number one. Number two, the separation of church and state it was more so for different protection reasons. Right so it's to one protect our citizens in saying that the government does not have the right to determine your religion. It does not have the right to determine how you believe what you believe the way that you believe but the government also does not have the right to govern the church right the church is a self governing body the government does not have the right to to step in tell the church x y&z but the church being involved in in policy issues, not only have we always been involved in the the governing of of the country, right. We also live here, we are deeply affected by the issues that are going on within our country. So when I say that, I mean issues like food insecurity, I mean, systemic racism, I mean, poverty, low wages, things of that sort. Those things are quote unquote, political issues. Anything that requires a government's response, or requires legislation is considered a political issue. The people in our congregations are affected by this, right? There are people in our congregations who are experiencing food insecurity, especially since this pandemic has started. There are people in our congregations who are experiencing racism, sexism, who are experiencing housing insecurity, and as we are faith leaders as we are preachers and teachers of the gospel, we cannot say that we love our brother, our sister, our sibling. But we are not willing to recognize the issues that impact them and fully recognize those issues to the point where we are willing to move forward and do something about them. And doing something about them has to be has to include a political response, in terms of advocating for legislation that is going to create real systemic change, advocating for resources, both on the national level, state level and local level for the people that we care about. You know, a lot of times in the church, we see charity as advocacy, right, if somebody doesn't have food, then let's create a food pantry, or let's create a soup kitchen. And those things are needed. Those are only short term fixes, we need to get to the point where we are also advocating for systemic change, to the point where people would no longer be food insecure, people no longer need the services, you know, our job is to work ourselves out of a job. So you know, especially for those of us who work in nonprofits or advocacy organizations that are speaking about these issues, we should be so passionate about them that we are trying to work ourselves out of a job, meaning we are trying to eradicate these problems. But going back to the question, absolutely, the church should be involved in these issues, because we live here, our loved ones live here, people in our community live here and are affected by these issues. And if we are going to say that we truly love them, and we truly want to see these issues get better than we have to be willing to take that step forward and seek systemic change in systemic change means engaging in policy. But then to your question of why does the Presbyterian Church have an office in Washington DC? Well, we at the Presbyterian Church recognize that, right? We recognize that we cannot just be hearers of the word, we have to be doers of the word. And part of being doers of the word is going into the world and advocating for resources, advocating for an end to in justices. And we can only see that come to fruition if we are engaged in the system that created many of these issues in the first place. So we have to engage in policy into the question of, well, are members of Congress listening to us? Well, yeah, they actually are out the faith community has more of a sway with members of Congress than many people may think one because there are a lot of members of Congress who are people have faith, and they're guided by their faith principles. So to have people of faith or faith leaders come into their office and speak to them about different issues about why they should or shouldn't support have different issues. It means a lot to them. And it resonates with them, because they are guided by their beliefs. But also the faith community has a unique position when it comes to advocacy on Capitol Hill. Because we are able to have access to different spaces that quote unquote, secular organizations wouldn't be able to have access to because we are coming in the door with the understanding that we are people of faith. This is a person of faith. 

 

28:55 – Christian Brooks

And we are trying to talk to them from a theological standpoint and help them to understand how our understanding of God, our understanding of Jesus, our understanding of Jesus's call for us, what our understanding for Jesus's call for us is and how said legislation is in line with that, or is not in line with that, but also people of faith. We have some big numbers. So at the Presbyterian church we have about what 1.4 million members, we typically advocate with other denominations, other faith traditions, and other faith based organizations and that tends to amplify our voice. And a lot of the people who are inaccessible, so to speak to I don't want to call them regular groups. I don't know what to call let's like non faith based groups. They're accessible to us because you know, they go to church billionaires go to church. Not all of you. However, some of them go to church, you know, members of Congress, go to church members of the administration, go go to church. And like I said before it is it resonates when a faith leader is able to come and have a heart conversation, when we're walking into the these doors, we are not only bringing the statistics, but we're also having heart and soul and spirit conversations that has been very, very helpful for us. And that has been very helpful in our history. You know, if we look at the history of the United States, many of the revolutions, so to speak, that we've had have been led by people of faith, you know, the American Revolution, led by people of faith, the civil rights led by people of faith. So, you know, the church has always shown up, because it is our moral imperative to, to not see suffering to not watch oppression. And in order to in order for us to fulfill that moral imperative, we have to engage in the system that has created these issues. 

 

31:24 – Simon Doong

Thank you so much for that, that great response. We really appreciate you talking about the the moral imperative, as well as the historical precedent that there is for the church and people of faith to be involved in politics and advocacy, and in making sure that we take care of one another. So thank you so much for being with us today.

 

31:44 – Christian Brooks

Thank you so much for having me. I really appreciate this platform. I really appreciate being able to come on here.

 

31:53 – Simon Doong

And joining us today for our resource roundup segment. We are so glad to welcome back Beth ochre, who is field staff for racial equity and women's intercultural ministries for the Presbyterian Church USA. We featured her as a guest answering a question and one of our earliest episodes. And we're so glad to have Beth back with us today to talk about some really great resources that you all should know about. So Beth, what's some good resources that Presbyterians should have in their wheelhouse?

 

32:29 – Beth Olker

Yeah, so I have two that I specifically want to share with you all the day. One is a report that came out about five years ago now about gender and leadership in the Presbyterian Church, USA. This report, this report was put together by the Presbyterian mission agencies Research Services, and and the Office of racial equity and women's in our cultural ministries. And it really focuses on both the issues of inequality in gender and leadership in the pcusa. But also, interestingly enough the perceptions of the people in the pews as to what they notice, and what goes unnoticed when it comes to issues of of gender justice, and gender equity. So this resource, so when they were making this resource, they interviewed almost 3000, Presbyterians and there was a breakdown of male and female church members and then male and female teaching elders. And then there was a group of people whose gender and statistics they didn't have and when they gave their final reports, and and the the main two things that I think are important for us to say over and over again until they're not true anymore, is that gender discrimination is still pervasive within the Presbyterian Church USA. eight out of 10 female pastors have experienced discrimination, harassment, and or prejudicial comments due to their gender, and four out of 10 female pastors feel that they have experienced gender bias in hiring and promotion or in the selection for an official position within the pcusa. And that can be a paid position or an unpaid position in our systems. The second statistic is so so remember, eight out of 10 female teaching elders have experienced discrimination, harassment, or had prejudicial comments made to them. Almost half of all of the members of the churches, the lady that was surveyed, had no real awareness that this was even an issue. So I think that that's important. Both of those things are important for us to look at the fact that it's so pervasive and the fact that to the people sitting in the pews, it's not something that they're noticing that begs the question of both how do we make the church this place that we are trying to form in the image of God's kingdom and God's love for this world? How do we make it a more adjust place for women and for all who experience gender bias and discrimination based on gender? But then also, what are we doing that so many women and so many non binary people are being hurt by discrimination. And so many of the people in the pews have no idea what's going on. So that leads me to the second resource that I want to share. And this one is one I'm very proud of, because I was able to be in the creation process of this is we there was a pretty soon after this gender leadership study came out, there was a conference of women of academic women and have ordained women and of laity, women, and everyone gathered together to kind of figure out so what how do we use this resource? How do we use this information? How do we get the most mileage out of this? For the denomination and the time pretty groundbreaking research and research that surprised none of us, but still, I think shocked a lot of people. And so a lot of ideas were batted around. And finally, the idea came up to create a video series, because we realized one of the issues we were facing, is the fact that the church narrative, the larger church narrative, the largest church narratives, are void of the stories of the women who were shaping the story alongside and sometimes, often in the case of church history, in front of the men who we prize and praise for their work, which led us to this, I'm completely biased. But this wonderful video series we were able to create under the leadership of FiO Academy, which at the time was being run by Landon whatsit. And then Reverend Dr. Elizabeth Henson hasty, the three of us did the producing. So together, we were able to bring together a very powerful group of people to tell the story in the historical context, and also in the present church, of where we see women in leadership, where we see women shaping the church, and to talk about why are these stories lost? Why are these stories forgotten? What are the what are the neglected stories that that we want to pass to the next generation of, of gender justice allies? So we were able to create six short videos, we intentionally kept them short. So they could be Sunday school lessons, or circle meetings or youth group studies, or, you know, any Bible studies that we talked about the neglected stories? So why is it that why do we tell these stories? Why is it critical to tell the stories that the people in power neglect to share? Why are we committed to telling these stories? I will tell you, I have never heard more beautiful responses than when asking people why these stories are important to tell. They told stories of mentors and of parents and of heroes from history, who I had never heard of. But I immediately was transfixed by their power and the stories. And then we take a deeper dive into specifically the reformation, the historical reformation. And we look beyond Calvin and look in sort of a Western European context. And look at the stories that were surrounding the stories that we know we look around the stories of Martin Luther and john Calvin. And we highlight stories of of communities of color and the reformation of enough prominent women across Western Europe. And then in our third video, we continue to talk about the Protestant Reformation in the 16th century, and and ask the people engaged in the conversations to think about what is a reformer to you? What does it mean to be a reformer? What are important dates of reformation, and we hear stories from the earliest moments in our churches history to moments that reshaped and reformed the faith of the people on our panels. And then our last three videos, the second half of the series is a little more a little more modern, a little more, what is the context right now? So there's a video on finding our voices and asking people to talk about, you know, how did you find your way into reformed traditions? And then what what's the relationship between your context and your experiences and how you use that to interpret the Bible and to interpret God's Word to the world and then we talked about in the last few videos, we talked about identity and justice and that's when we bring in some of the specific information from this gender leadership study and talk about the kind of the so what of it all I mean, you we can be touched by the stories but how do we want this product and this information to really change and to really motivate and power, justice and equity in our churches and in our world? I highlighted Amanda, I know y'all are going to put the link in the podcast notes, but it's on the Theo academy website and the all of the videos on there are worth a watch and very helpful as a pastor and a Christian educator, I've used them. So while you're on that site, I definitely recommend this women in the Reformation series.

 

40:21 – Lee Catoe

Thanks, Beth, for being back with us. Or you may be the first person that has made a double appearance on the pottery. Thank you. So we're very honored to have you here. And again, these links and all these resources will be found in the show notes. We hope you use them use them for Sunday school and all the all the ways that you can educate your congregation or your community. We hope you use that. So again, thanks. 

 

40:40 - Beth Olker

Thank you, Beth. Yeah, no problem.

 

40:55 – Simon Doong & Lee Catoe

This has been the matter of faith podcast brought to you by the Presbyterian peacemaking program and unbound. If you would like to submit a question for discussion, you can do so at faith [email protected] We look forward to hearing from you see you next time. See you next time, y'all.

 

41:11 – Simon Doong

Thank you for joining us for Episode Seven of a matter of faith, a Presby podcast. Don't forget to subscribe.

 

41:39 – Lee Catoe

And don't forget to leave us a review. It helps us to bring you this podcast and all the content that you're listening to. So don't forget to subscribe.