Human Relations Day: January 20, 2013
On Sunday, January 20, 2013, we will have a special offering for Human Relations Day.
In the 1700s, John and Charles Wesley visited prisoners at Oxford Castle in England, sharing food, medicine and Holy Communion. Those early Methodists began a rich tradition that continues today.
One example is in Virginia, where Norfolk United Methodist Church developed a community-based non-profit called “Bridging the Vision.” It serves more than 85 families with a video-visitation prison ministry and 100 families with an after-school tutorial ministry.
“We have been able to add the extra component of restoration of rights to our video prison ministry,” the Rev. Sherry Daniels said, “to provide a stable and consistent connection for families where a family member is incarcerated. We help persons to move beyond the shame of having their right to vote revoked, to having it restored.”
The annual Human Relations Day offering supports Bridging the Vision. Human Relations Day calls United Methodists to recognize the right of all God’s children to realize their potential. The special offering benefits Community Developers, United Methodist Voluntary Services and Youth Offender Rehabilitation programs.
United Methodists connect with Human Relations Day by supporting community ministries like Bridging the Vision that teach and advocate for justice, especially among people struggling to survive in the margins of society. Human Relations Day “challenges our understanding of community engagement and how the community really experiences Shalom,” Daniels said.
Your gifts to Human Relations Day provide avenues to restored relationships through ministries like Youth Offender Rehabilitation, Community Developers self-improvement programs and United Methodist Voluntary Services community advocacy programs.