The Church of St. Martin-in-the-Fields is a founding member of Philadelphians Organized to Witness, Empower, and Rebuild (POWER), a faith-based community organizing project that includes 41 interfaith congregations throughout Philadelphia. Through the intentional development of grassroots engagement in congregations, POWER seeks to create positive structural and policy changes for the benefit of the most vulnerable members of our communities.
On April 4, the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr, POWER and the MLK D.A.R.E. Coalition will participate in the I Am Human campaign.
In a time where profit has taken precedent over people, it is critical to support workers as they unite to assert their human rights and dignity. People are not just workers, measured solely in production. We are laborers of love and deserve the right to be protected through the unionization that Martin Luther King died fighting for 50 years ago.
To honor Martin Luther King’s legacy, Philadelphia must win the right to unions for all. On April 4th, POWER invites you to join hospitality workers with a one-day fast abstaining from food, buying, and working. We also ask you to wear all black in solidarity with workers.
Support workers as they proclaim, “I Am Human” by participating in the “I Am Human Campaign One Day Fast for Justice.” Actions for the day include
12:00 PM – Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church Bible study and prayer with fasters | Arch St. United Methodist Church (55 N Broad St, Philadelphia, PA 19107)
4:00 PM - POWER members will share how their work within POWER connects to the principles of their faith traditions. We aim to advance our campaigns for justice in education, prisons and the legal system, economic equality, and climate repair. We will connect with one another in solidarity and in love as we work toward building a beloved community where all are seen in the image of God and treated with respect and dignity. | Thomas Paine Plaza (1401 John F. Kennedy Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19102)
5:00 PM – Mass prayer vigil with all faith, community, and labor supporters
6:01 PM – Broadcast of Martin Luther King Jr. speech
7:00 PM – Break the fast at Arch St. United Methodist Church (55 N Broad St, Philadelphia, PA 19107)
Contact Deacon Carol Duncan (330-705-4795) if you want to travel together on public transportation to the event.
MLK Day: A People’s Call to Action Rally and Teach-Ins with POWER and the MLK D.A.R.E. Coalition
Monday, January 15th, 2018 from 1:00-4:00 p.m.
Dobbins High School (2150 W Lehigh Avenue Philadelphia, PA)
Join POWER for our “People’s Call to Action” rally as we continue building a movement of strategic advancement, faithful confrontation, and intentional connection with one another. The rally will take place from 1:00-2:30 p.m. and will be followed by campaign issue teach-ins from 2:30-4:00 p.m., listed below. Visit http://www.powerinterfaith.org for more information.
Philadelphia Live Free Strategy Team Bail Reform Teach-In
Join POWER to demand of Aloft Hotel: ‘Where are the jobs?!’ At $183,000 in public subsidy for each hotel room, the Aloft may be the most heavily subsidized hotel in the history of Philadelphia on a per room basis. When the Aloft was awarded a grant from the state of Pennsylvania in 2013, the company promised to create 170 full-time jobs, 115 of which would be at a “destination restaurant.” The hotel opened last month with no such restaurant and only a fraction of the 170 jobs that were promised have actually been created.
Join POWER and its partner Center City Organized for Responsible Development (CCORD) at Arch Street Methodist Church at 55 N Broad (Broad and Arch) to demand that the Aloft keep its promises: restore the 115 pledged jobs or return the public money it received. Deacon Carol Duncan is on the board of CCORD, representing POWER. Call her for more details 330-705-4795.
“Working with POWER on education, living wage, and mass incarceration is by far our must constructive and concrete response to systemic racism.”
POWER continues its breathless schedule this fall. Now is a great time to get involved in their ongoing justice work in Philadelphia. As Jarrett says, “Working with POWER on education, living wage, and mass incarceration is by far our must constructive and concrete response to systemic racism. In addition, work with POWER immerses [us] in a truly multi-faith and interracial environment which, if you are white, will really challenge you to put aside habits of white privilege as you learn to work across historic divides of distrust.”
Each of the three strategy teams has a top priority. The Live Free team (focusing on mass incarceration) has decided to concentrate on eliminating cash bail. Too many people awaiting trial waste their lives in jail because they are too poor to pay bail. The Education team is pressing the state senate to consider using the fair funding formula on all school funding instead of only the 6% of new funding. The Economic Dignity team is visiting and pressuring city council to raise the minimum wage for city contractors and subcontractors from $12 to $15. Each strategy team holds monthly meetings to move its agenda ahead. At monthly Action Team meetings (next one is Sept. 12) all POWER members choose which team to attend and hear what all teams are doing. At quarterly legislative assembly meetings (Oct. 10), decisions are made to direct future POWER actions.
To feel your way in to this fascinating vibrant multi-faith environment, try the monthly Northwest Cluster meetings. Cluster meetings allow you to meet POWER neighbors and hear about the strategy team activities. They usually include some interactive activities to mix everyone up together. The next one is Thursday, September 14th at 7:00 p.m. at Summit Presbyterian.
Of course, when demonstrations are called for, POWER can get the city out into the streets. Please note the photos below of the quickly organized “Philly is Charlottesville” march and rally in response to the violence in Charlottesville, VA in August. For more on POWER events, check their website (powerinterfaith.org), especially the calendar, frequently.
POWER and its partners in MLK DARE (Day of Action, Resistance and Empowerment) developed a 21st Century Declaration of Rights for a Better America to explore what justice may mean in our city, in our times. These are the principles:
8:00 a.m. Holy Eucharist
9:15 a.m. worship.together (Eucharist for preschool families)
9:15 a.m. Parish Forum & Christian Education (Kairos)
10:30 a.m. Choral Eucharist
Morning prayer is offered at 7:30 a.m. weekdays, in the Mary Chapel.
Silent morning meditation is offered at 8:15 a.m. weekdays, in the Mary Chapel.
Mid-week Eucharist is offered at 12:15 p.m. Wednesdays, in the Mary Chapel.
Compline is offered at 7:00 p.m. on 2nd & 4th Wednesdays, in the Church.
Choral Evensong is offered at 5:00 p.m. on 1st Sundays, Oct.-June, in the Church.
We would love to have you join us.
This Episcopal church is located in the heart of the historic neighborhood of Chestnut Hill, five blocks west of Germantown Avenue at the corner of St. Martin’s Lane and West Willow Grove Avenue.