October 2017 Rio Texas MFSA newsletter

Please find the October 2017 Rio Texas MFSA newsletter here: 2017 Oct

 

Southern Poverty Law Center – Ten Ways to Fight Hate

When bias motivates an unlawful act, it is considered a hate crime. Most hate crimes are inspired by race and religion, but hate today wears many faces. Bias incidents (eruptions of hate where no crime is committed) also tear communities apart and can escalate into actual crimes.

Since 2010, law enforcement agencies have reported an average of about 6,000 hate crime incidents per year to the FBI. But government studies show that the real number is far higher — an estimated 260,000 per year. Many hate crimes never get reported, in large part because the victims are reluctant to go to the police. In addition, many law enforcement agencies are not fully trained to recognize or investigate hate crimes, and many simply do not collect or report hate crime data to the FBI.

The good news is, all over the country people are fighting hate, standing up to promote tolerance and inclusion. More often than not, when hate flares up, good people rise up against it — often in greater numbers and with stronger voices.

This guide sets out 10 principles for fighting hate in your community. https://www.splcenter.org/sites/default/files/com_ten_ways_to_fight_hate_2017_web.pdf

Message from ACLU of Texas

Thanks to the hard work of our ACLU legal team and partners, a federal court decided to block most of Texas’s anti-immigrant law Senate Bill 4 (SB4) that was scheduled to take effect Sept. 1. This is an enormous victory for immigrants and their families.

Learn what the SB4 ruling means for Texas immigrants.

This victory is a direct result of the combined efforts of affected communities, cities, and counties. If SB4 had gone into effect on Sept. 1, it would have forcibly enlisted local law enforcement officers into Trump’s deportation force and targeted people of color, at a time when our community is recovering from one of the worst natural disasters in U.S. history.

But this fight is not over. The State has already filed its appeal. We will continue to be vigilant of civil rights abuses by local officers.

Read the key parts of the Court’s decision.

Sincerely,

ACLU of Texas

MFSA at the Rio Texas Annual Conference

Rio Texas MFSA will provide witness for Social Justice once again at the Rio Texas Annual Conference in Corpus Christi, June 7 – 9, 2017.  We will sponsor the 7th Annual Peace and Justice Luncheon on Thursday, June 8, at noon.  We are excited that our luncheon speaker will be John Hill, Assistant General Secretary of Advocacy and Organizing for the UMC General Board of Church and Society.


Also, our Book Fair will return this year!  We ask friends to box up their gently used books – religious and spiritual books, curriculum, and appropriate fiction and nonfiction – and we take them to Corpus Christi.  It becomes like a treasure hunt at our tables!  People contribute to us according to what they think the books are worth to them. The donations help defray the costs of the Rio Texas MFSA Peace and Justice Luncheon. Contact Rowland Curry rcurry@austin.rr.com and he will arrange to pick them up.


Annual Conference 2017 Registration is NOW OPEN
Registration InformationGeneral InformationWorkshops  • Breakfasts and Luncheons

(Click here for link to Peace & Justice Luncheon flyer)

Thursday, June 8, 2017 – Noon

American Bank Convention Center – Watergarden A (upstairs)

Corpus Christi, Texas

A Peace & Justice Luncheon Sponsored by

Methodist Federation for Social Action, Rio Texas Chapter

Rio Texas Conference Transforming Communities Vision Team

Featuring

John Hill

Assistant General Secretary for Advocacy and Grassroots Organizing

United Methodist General Board of Church and Society

John S. Hill has been with the GBCS since Earth Day, April 22, 2002. He has served as Program Director for Environmental Justice and Director of Economic and Environmental Justice. As part of his ecumenical work, John serves as chair of the Policy Committee for the National Council of Churches’ Eco-Justice Working Group and co-chair of the Washington Interreligious Staff Community’s Energy and Ecology Working Group.

Join us for this on-site luncheon. In addition, we will honor the recipients of the MFSA “Building a Just Community” Awards.

Luncheon Registration Information

Cost:      $12.00 in advance (by June 1) – Check or cash;  $15.00 at the door (limited number available)

Or, pay by credit card https://www.eventbrite.com/e/let-justice-roll-down-tickets-32890572588

Credit Card fee of $1.65 will be added to the cost ($13.65 total)

Please return this form with cash or check payment.

Name(s):  ______________________________________________

Address:  __________________________City:________________

Church:                                       # Tickets: ___ X $ 12.00 =$ ______

E-Mail (for confirmation): __________________________________

Indicate Special Dietary Need: _____________________________

Make Check to: “Rio Texas MFSA”

Mail this form and check to:

Janice Curry, Treasurer

1509 Mearns Meadow Blvd.

Austin, TX  78758

For more information contact:

jlcurry@austin.rr.com

512-836-7004

Support Syrian Refugees with the Music Peace Project

Music Peace Project is a nonprofit organization, based in Austin that brings together national and international musicians in order to assist in humanitarian relief around the world. They do this by engaging in local, national and international communities through the art and gift of music (www.musicpeaceproject.org).

In collaboration with Austin’s Wesley UMC Choir, Music Peace Project recorded its first album, Austin for Peace. The album, released on April 1, is comprised of arrangements of song selections that are known and loved worldwide. These songs all have a message of peace. 100% of the net profits will be donated to the International Rescue Committee to aid Syrian refugees. Founded at Albert Einstein’s request, the IRC (www.rescue.org) offers lifesaving aid and solutions to today’s most challenging human crises. The IRC is rated with the highest grades given to a nonprofit organization based on their performance and expenses. Their goal is to sell 2,000 albums and raise $25,000.

According to Esteban Alvarez, President and Co-founder of Music Peace Project, “Perhaps the largest human catastrophe on earth today is the Syrian conflict. Over 12 million people have been either killed or displaced over the past five years.”

Austin for Peace is an album that involves international renowned artists (such as John Patitucci, Ignacio Berroa, Esteban Alvarez, Tamela Hedstrôm, Red Young, to mention a few) as well as local artists (Rabbi Blumofe, James Sheeran, Russell Shores, and some key members of Wesley United Methodist Church) and its mission is to assist the Syrian refugees with shelter, food and medical care. You will find the United Methodist symbol on the album cover.

Please support this very innovative and interesting project that is taking place here in Austin. This is a way you can offer support for Syrian refugees while enjoying good music. Click on these links to listen to songs and watch a short video about the project

Here are two of the songs on the album, My Sweet Lord, and Imagine:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/tcsx41xbdkdwm3q/MySweetLord2_03.mp3?dl=0

https://www.dropbox.com/s/55c77sjauzjjw1j/Imagine3_09.mp3?dl=0

Link to Google Play:

https://play.google.com/store/music/album/Esteban_Alvarez_Austin_for_Peace?id=B4r47pp4tv3agi5h65eochpi4be

A short video on MPP and its mission:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rmYdrV2FbXE

Contact Velvet Hammerschmidt at velveth@v-hdesign.com or Esteban Alvarez at eacmusicjazz@gmail.com if you would like to help support their efforts for humanitarian assistance.

For more information contact MFSA representative Janice Curry at jlcurry@austin.rr.com.

2017 Rio Texas MFSA Peace and Justice Luncheon Flyer

Please join Rio Texas MFSA and the Rio Texas Conference Transforming Communities Vision Team at the 7th Annual Peace and Justice Luncheon  during the Rio Texas Conference of the United Methodist Church in Corpus Christi on Thursday, June 8. See the registration flyer at: LuncheonRegistration2017