Working for Racial Justice and Equality
Founded as an integrated church in 1955, Little River United Church of Christ was an active participant in the civil rights movement. We continue to explore modern-day racial justice and learning about problems disproportionately facing people of color.
In the fall of 2014, the Board of Outreach and Social Justice sponsored two events exploring the history and persistence of racial injustice. Dr. Jennifer Ritterhouse of George Mason University shared her expertise about the history of Jim Crow discrimination (which was not confined to the South). She is the author of Growing Up Jim Crow: How Black and White Southern Children Learned Race (UNC Press, 2006). The audio file of her talk can be heard here.
We have several upcoming racial and social justice activities.
Standing for Equal Rights for the LBGTQ Community
In January 2012, Little River UCC passed a resolution supporting marriage equality. It urges:
- ● support for equal marriage rights for couples regardless of gender;
- ● an end to rhetoric that fuels hostility, misunderstanding, fear, and hatred expressed toward gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender persons;
- ● members and friends of Little River UCC to communicate this resolution to local, state, and national legislators
In April 2014 the Church Council voted to join a friend-of-the-court brief submitted by People of Faith for Equality in Virginia during the Federal appeal of the Bostic marriage equality case, which defined marriage as a "fundamental right," thus disallowing efforts to deny marriage to same-sex couples. The appeals court upheld that ruling, and in October the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear further challenges to Bostic and similar actions in other states.
Little River participates annually in the Capitol Pride Parade. We joined in the first Northern Virginia Pride Festival in October 2014.
In January 2008, the congregation adopted a statement recognizing our responsibility to respond to global warming and use energy and other resources rationally. As a first step, the Trustees arranged for an energy audit by Greater Washington Interfaith Power and Light, a nonprofit initiative that helps faith institutions and others work for a more just, sustainable, and healthy creation by reducing the threat of global warming. We are working to put GWIPL’s recommendations into effect. Our former Christian Social Action Committee sponsored a talk by GWIPL, and the Board of Christian Education arranged classes in its Public Policy and Faith program that focused on sustainable living, alternative energy, global warming (and Fairfax County's response to it), and the relevance of energy policies to national security. News about the "Green Scene" appears on the social hall bulletin board.