As we move from the month named after the two-faced god Janus into Februa’s month of purification, we explore flip-sides of the same coin: love and grief; cleansing conversion that comes from stillness; and wiping away destructive systems created by revered ancestors. Black History Month is full of reversals, redressing, and rebuilding.
Get ready for Valentine’s Day with Slug and Snail Search for Love (Pilgrim) – a delightful exploration of ‘the diversity of love’s expression’ in the natural world.
When love dissolves into grief, Missing Violet (Beaming) may help young and old explore emotions and find comfort in community.
Bump into ‘wildness as an integral part of being fully alive’ with Collisions of Earth and Sky: Connecting with Nature for Nourishment, Reflection, and Transformation (Broadleaf).
Let Jesus’ centering practice become ‘a transformative path for personal and social change’ with Practice the Pause: Jesus’ Contemplative Practice, New Brain Science, and What It Means to Be Fully Human (Broadleaf)
Black History Month is an excellent time to engage Sandhya Rani Jha’s, Rebels, Despots, and Saints: The Ancestors Who Free Us and The Ancestors We Need to Free (Chalice): case studies of activists and spiritual leaders that invite us to ‘re-think who our ancestors are and how to relate to them’. Writing and discussion prompts invite interactive engagement; suggestions for personal and community rituals provide readers the ‘tools needed to connect with their own ancestors and find grounding for racial reconciliation and liberation in their own communities’ as they connect to the work of dismantling white supremacy as a spiritual practice.
Expand on those spiritual practices – and find ways to integrate them into the worship of the whole community with the UMC’s Worship Resources for Black History Month – which we added to our lib guides of liturgical resources for Black History Month and Inclusive Worship.
Miguel De La Torre’s Resisting Apartheid America: Living the Badass Gospel (Eerdmans), ‘assesses the past and present threads of systemic racism in American politics… [and] takes on authors revered in Christian theology… aiming to uproot the ideological foundations of racism in Christianity… [to warn] of a decline in democracy and rise in political violence – but [equip] us with the nonviolent ethical framework to resist this bleak future’.
Inspire young leaders to take society into a more just future with We Are Allies! (Macmillan), a picture book exploration of what being an ally looks like and how no matter how small, every person can do something to change the world for us all.
Focus those allies’ efforts with Building Faith’s list of Picture Books for Antiracists. We included it in a few different lib guides, where you can find more children’s books on Antiracism/White Supremacy; Compassion; History of Race in America; and Identity & Diversity.