Our City, Our Story Community Blog

Coming Together


This year’s Our City, Our Story, will feature acclaimed authors Elizabeth Gilbert and Kiese Laymon discussing ways we can heal and come together as we come out of a pandemic that exacerbated so many economic and social divisions. Memphis has been here before. After the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., in 1968, economic, social, and racial divisions threatened to tear Memphis apart. A diverse group of community and faith leaders came together and MIFA was created to confront the issues of poverty, hunger, and social division through service. 2020 brought another crisis to Memphis. In a new series of blogs, some of our current day faith leaders have taken time to express their visions and hopes on healing and coming out of the pandemic better and stronger as a community.

 

Thoughts on Reuniting

My four-year-old daughter has an incredible love for animated movies. Even at such a young age, she gets drawn in by the plots, characters, and the yearning for the conclusion where everything turns out to be okay in the end. About six months ago, she became fixated on villains, and I was frequen... Read More

What Will Be Your Contribution?

In the Eastern Orthodox faith tradition, September 14th is the celebration of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross of Christ. While once the cross was a symbol of suffering, pain, and death, through the Resurrection it has become a symbol of victory and life. This year’s feast appropriately co... Read More

Resilience

As we gaze into the horizon of post-pandemic life, the state of our communities is in desperate need of attention. The pandemic hit us hard with a reality check. An oddity of a lifetime, never before had we seen such large-scale disruption to our communal routines and the devastation of relations... Read More

Spirituality of Pandemic

We are in an in-between time. The worst of the COVID-19 pandemic appears to be receding, yet the future is still uncertain. New variants, faltering vaccination progress, and the human desire to simply deny we are in difficulty, contend with the ending of mask mandates, reopening of social life, a... Read More

Different Does Not Mean Deficient

The month of March in the year 2020 will forever be a turning point in the sense of normalcy that we enjoyed, both globally and personally. Our attitudes and opinions regarding the necessary adjustments for sustaining life, our institutions, and our hopes for a better world were met with hesitanc... Read More

Building a Stronger Future

The Jewish calendar holds wisdom within it. Somehow, no matter the year, no matter our age or stage of life, tradition whispers new meaning to us. While the words of Torah remain the same and the rhythm of the year keeps its beat, we have yet another year of love and loss, of learning and leaning... Read More

Forward Together

I am privileged to pastor a purple church.  In an age where we have reduced our country to such simple categories as “red states” and “blue states,” and when we all-too-frequently confine our neighbors to equally simple descriptors that allow us to put them in their ... Read More

It Was a Cataclysmic, Disastrous, Soul Stretching Year

“It was a cataclysmic, disastrous, soul stretching year.”  This comment was not in reference to 2020-2021. The person speaking was referring to 1968 following the marches, the protests, the social unrest, and the death toll that year. Sanitation workers Echol Cole and R... Read More

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