The Love Committee


Welcome! We are the Love Committee, and all are invited to learn and worship with us in a safe and supportive environment of caring and faith!

Keep reading to find out how to live God’s word through understanding and getting involved. Questions? Contact us at LoveCommittee@godamong.us.

“Do not be dismayed by the brokenness of the world. All things break, and all things can be mended. Not with time, as they say, but with intention. So go. Love intentionally, extravagantly, unconditionally. The broken world waits in darkness for the light that is you." - L.R. Knost

OUR MISSION AND VISION STATEMENTS

Mission

Because we are committed to living our Christian faith by confronting injustice and standing in solidarity with oppressed peoples, the mission of the Love Committee is to provide members with tools, resources and opportunities for conversation to better understand and eradicate inequality and discrimination in ourselves and our community. Love and compassion are our guiding principles.

Vision

Our vision for our church is that it is a fully inclusive community that welcomes all with unconditional love, affirming and celebrating the diversity of God’s kingdom. We are motivated by compassion to make our church a safe space for everyone to grow and learn to love intentionally.


CURRENT EVENTS

How can we make it obvious that we welcome everyone?


The Love Committee and the ILC Council are pursuing the answer to this question. At a Conversations with Council event, there were some good ideas to start with. We began by focusing on how to make it more obvious that we welcome those who have disabilities.


Below is a re-cap of what we learned and what we were able to do. If you have any further thoughts or ideas, please let us know.


Here is what we learned and what we did:

  • People who are unable to stand, or prefer not to, need seating up front in the sanctuary so they can see the screens. 3 chairs have been removed on either side of the center aisle to accommodate those in wheelchairs or with walkers. NOTE: The seating may change with the change in service times. Please let us or the Ministry staff know if you need further or different accommodations.

  • Closed captioning has been turned on during the livestream for those with difficulty hearing. Closed captions are also available for our videos.

  • Large-print copies of the order of service for the traditional service are available upon request for anyone who needs one. Advance notice is requested in order to accommodate this need.

  • Headsets are available for those who need assistance with hearing.

  • For someone who has difficulty rising from a chair, having arms on the chair is very helpful. There are several of these types of chairs available in the sanctuary. Advance notice is requested in order to accommodate this need.

  • Kids with disabilities may benefit from having an older companion who is committed to be with them during Sunday School.

  • We have an updated campus map, showing the location of handicapped restrooms, to put in one of the kiosks and also to be able to hand out to people who are new to the campus.

Some things will need more time and attention:

  • The restroom doors are difficult to open, especially for those with walkers. The doorstops don't always work to keep them propped open. The Property Committee is aware of this.

  • The handicapped spots are often full on Sunday morning. Please remember that these parking spaces are only for those with a handicapped sign or license plate.

  • We don't yet have much information about the needs of those with cognitive disabilities.

  • We could consider having an ASL interpreter if/when the need arises. So far we are not aware of a need for this support.

  • There is some support for braille worship materials. We aren't aware of any greater need than what is already available.

We continue to invite those who themselves have disabilities, or who have a loved one with a disability, to let us know about your experiences at ILC. If you have any other ideas about how to make everything we do more accessible, email LoveCommittee@godamong.us.



SUNDAY NOVEMBER 20 IS OUR 2nd ANNUAL HOPE FOR THE HOLIDAYS GREETING CARD CAMPAIGN


Last year we signed and sent about 200 cards that were delivered to children and families in detention centers. We have just under 100 cards so far this year and can use some more. If you can donate cards this week, please drop them off in the box on the table in the Library without envelopes. You can also bring them on Sunday, again without the envelopes.


Then on Sunday 11/20, we invite you to stay for a moment after the services and sign a greeting card or two for this campaign, which is sponsored by Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service. There will be tables in the courtyard with everything you need, including instructions with suggestions of encouraging messages of hope and love. Let’s let these parents and children know they’re not forgotten this holiday season!




Become a Volunteer Reader for the Freedom to Choose Project!


Matthew 25:36 - "... I was in prison and you visited me."


You can have a profound imapct on the life of someone who is incarcerated. Watch this video to see how interaction with Freedom to Choose volunteers has impacted the life of Alex, who currently resides in Valley State Prison. Then visit Freedom to Choose Project to learn more and get involved.



Clean Energy For All Fair


The Environmental Stewardship Team of St. Bart's has invited ILC to join them in organizing their 2nd annual Clean Energy For All Fair. They are looking for anyone who would like to join the planning work group for the creation of this event. Click here for more details on what is being planned and how you might get involved. Contact Parth Domke to let her know you're interested or if you have questions.

PAST EVENTS

Housing segregation and race

We held a discussion on this topic based on Richard Rothstein's videos and his book The Color of Law. We learned how deliberate, racially-motivated policies through the years have led to a continuation of the segregation we still live with today. We also discussed possible solutions. Watch the following YouTube videos to learn more.


The Origin of Race in the USA


Housing Segregation and Redlining


Segregated by Design

Sacred Ground

In partnership with St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church, we participated in Sacred Ground at from September 2021-February 2022. Sacred Ground is a film- and readings-based dialogue series on race, grounded in faith. Small groups walkedthrough chapters of America’s history of race and racism, while weaving in threads of family story, economic class, and political and regional identity.

The 10-part series focused on a powerful online curriculum of documentary films and readings that focus on Indigenous, Black, Latino, and Asian/Pacific American histories as they intersect with European American histories.

Sacred Ground is part of Becoming Beloved Community, The Episcopal Church’s long-term commitment to racial healing, reconciliation, and justice in their personal lives, their ministries, and our society. This series was open to all and was especially designed to help participants peel away the layers of misunderstandings and misinformation that have contributed to the challenges and divides of the present day – all while grounded in our call to faith, hope and love.

Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service Hope for the Holidays campaign

Thank you for your generous support for 2021 Hope for the HolidaysTM. The Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service Hope for the Holidays campaign. Each year, communities from across the United States write holiday cards and raise money to buy gifts for asylum-seeking families. There were many challenges to overcome this year, but despite these obstacles, LIRS remained committed to serving as many individuals and families as possible. With the support of YOU, our amazing donors, congregations, and communities, LIRS was able to bring a message of hope to thousands of immigrants across the country. Together, we sent 19,900 messages of hope to those seeking protection in the United States. More than 1,750 gifts were delivered to the children in our care. And with your generous donations, we raised nearly $30,000 to help provide for our asylum-seeking friends. In addition to your incredible support, we want to share a special “thank you” to our three partner hubs who helped make sure that every card got where it needed to go:

Ascension Lutheran Church - Thousand Oaks, CA First English Lutheran Church - Baltimore, MD St. John’s Lutheran Church - Bloomington, IL

Thank you again for your generosity this holiday season. We look forward to partnering with you again soon. Peace, Whitney Palmer-Lopez Program Manager for Outreach

Living Room Conversations

We’ve been through a lot of change during the pandemic. And there is more to come. It’s not likely that things are going to go back to the way they used to be, in terms of how we “do church.” How are you feeling about that possibility? We on the Love Committee are excited about what’s ahead as we grow and evolve! And we recognize that growing and evolving can be painful. Some of you probably have concerns about what this change might be and how you will be affected.

During the ILC Love Committee and the St. Bart’s Peace and Justice Ministry Communicating with Care conversation on January 19th, we shared our thoughts and answers to the following questions about engaging in difficult conversations:

What concerns, if any, do you have about engaging in–what are typically considered to be–difficult conversations (i.e. race, politics, religion, sexuality/gender identity, etc.)?

• In your experience, what words or actions have ​you or others used​ that:

o made you feel heard and/or bridged a divide?

o made you feel dismissed and/or shut down communication?

• How much grace (or courteous goodwill) are you willing to extend in communicating with others? What gets in your way when you aren’t as gracious or courteous as you’d like to be?

The conversation culminated with us developing a list of strategies for us to use when we face a difficult conversation. You can download a copy of them here. We hope you will take advantage of the fruits of our conversation! And please let us know if you’ve found them helpful.