One of my hopes for #realtalktheology is that it would be a place for me to continue to articulate my constructive (re: developing) theology as a youth pastor; I also wanted to create a space for resourcing and skill sharing among youth workers, particularly those who find themselves working in the Church.
So here’s my first official resource drop the #fergusonsyllabus: talking and teaching about police violence.
The fierce folks over at Project NIA have compiled some of the resources they have created over the years to facilitate popular education about police violence. They have also added a few action ideas that we can use with our youth too, such as, participate in the National Day of Protest Against Police Brutality on Wednesday October 22.
Project NIA’s mission is to “dramatically reduce the reliance on arrest, detention, and incarceration for addressing youth crime and to instead promote the use of restorative and transformative practices, a concept that relies on community-based alternatives.” Read more here.
Side note: if you haven’t used the popular education with your youth group, please read more, and give it a try. Pedagogy matters. Please also pick up bell hooks’ Teaching to Transgress: Education as the Practice of Freedom.
For the last three years I have been writing my own curriculum week to week using a somewhat inconsistent mix of lectionary (re: bible), current events (re: social media trends such as the ice bucket challenge), and social justice issues that the youth bring (re: ferguson).
#realtalk: Police violence is very much in the news lately and many young people want to address the issue (they always do), take them seriously.
To bring the biblical narrative into the mix, I will be combining this incredible syllabus with Michael Novelli’s Shaped by the Story “storying” method, which can be sampled in the video below and here; as well as, my friend, Rev. Vanessa Monroe’s “Raising Up Young Prophets” curriculum, not yet on the market. Stay tuned for reflections!
Until next time, here’s some more ‘resources’ for your youth group from the news:
- UN Condemns U.S. Police Brutality
- More Hypocrisy: [White] Man Pointing Gun at Police and Children, Not Killed by Police
- Hip Hops Biggest Names Release Song After Ferguson: Don’t Shoot
- Judge Rules White Girl will be tried as Black Adult
- 5 Important Facts about Youth Homelessness Lost in the Chatter over Miley Cyrus