Category Archives: District Team

Speaking Out Against Anti Asian-American Hate Crime

by Katherine Kim

Signs saying Stop Asian Hate and Asian Lives MatterWe are proud Asian Americans.

Anti Asian hate crime is not new. It has 150 years of discrimination history, including the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 (repealed in 1943), and Japanese internment during WWII.

Hate crime against Asian Americans has gotten worse since the COVID-19 pandemic. President Trump didn’t help by calling it terms such as “China Virus,” “Kung Fu virus,” etc.  The California State University reported that hate crimes against Asians has increased by 150% in 2020, and Stop AAPI (Asian American and Pacific Islanders) Hate has received reports of 3,795 hate crime incidents since the beginning of the pandemic.  58% of Asian Americans believed that racist views have increased during the pandemic. Continue reading

Changes to the Reading Program

by Carolyn Bircher

The UMW reading program is being administered a little differently this year.  Instead of creating an all-new 2022 book list, the 2021 list is being expanded.  The new expansion has just come out.  From my perspective, it seems like a normal yearly list with lots of great books, except we get it in May instead of September! 

The newly added books are included at the end of the online Reading Program catalog, or you can find a list of titles for both 2020 and 2021 at UnitedMethodistWomen.org/readingprogram.  Look in the lower right-hand corner, under “Get lists by year,” click “2021 – Updated for 2021-2022.”  The new titles are highlighted. 

Also, we’ve added a list of the new books, including local public library availability, on our District UMW Reading Program page, https://elcaminorealumw.org/educate/reading-program/

Some other Reading Program changes for this year are:

  • Books going back as far as 2015 can be counted for 2021 & 2022.
  • Listening to two FaithTalk podcasts can be counted as one Spiritual Growth book.
  • Three FaithTalk podcasts count as a Bonus Book in the Spiritual Growth category.
  • Watching these movies/documentaries will count:  (I’m not sure yet which category.)
    • Just Mercy
    • The Hate U Give  
    • Pushout

Note: Some of these changes may not yet be reflected on the UMW Reading Program page. Please contact me if you have any questions.

From the President: Happy Spring!

by K Stone, ECRDUMW President

Happy spring!

It is still spring.  I feel a season of renewal, resurgence and rebirth.

Although, we grieve for the many family, friends, colleagues we’ve lost during this time of the pandemic.  We understand better the scope of this deadly virus, yet our hearts are broken.  From health, we’ve been made to look at our politics, hate crimes, our diversity, communities and Justice for All.  When thinking of the scope of injustices, for our environment, our climate, our earth that we pass on to our children.   Oh my….so much hardship we’ve experienced.

Although our world is still not completely stable, nor back to “normal”, we are starting to hear about coming together, a stepping back into socialization, a reopening of our churches, restaurants and schools.  Unmasking, eating together…whaaat, really???

Yet, we do have lessons learned.  Technology, for sure, has given us a new way to connect families, friends, co-workers from across the globe!  We’ve learned of our ownership to discriminations and injustices.  We’re learning how to connect across the divides, with a renewed activism for Justice.

It starts with me (us), to be aware of our feelings, knowing where & what I can do to change my community. I learn when I’ve been given the chance to attend my granddaughter EmmaJames’s high school graduation in Nixa, MO. 

In the speech at my granddaughter’s graduation, Reagan Thomason, a graduating senior, said, “one of life’s great forward looking ceremony; continue to grow in the following days; as tomorrow is when we can be special….be special.”  In the same thought, continue to build on lessons learned, rely on our own intuitions, courage and commitment to fight for justice, for our communities and women, youth and children across the globe.

A prayer from The Upper Room Disciplines:  Come Holy Spirit; illumine our minds with the light of faith.  Draw us past perplexity so that we are led to ponder our personal calling and be enkindled by your love.  Amen

K Stone
President
ECRD UMW Leadership Team