This week is all about lightening the load and making room: for leaders from the margins and creation tenders; for congregational leaders and family caretakers; for parents and all those looking for a place to belong.

ONE

Let’s be honest: if we could all learn from the courage, determination, and grace of young leaders of color, the world would be a better place.

Encourage young leaders – especially those routinely pushed to the margins – with Black Girls Unbossed: Young World Changers Leading the Way (Beaming). Share the Study Guide for added depth and impact.

Unburden more mature leaders by digging even deeper with Against Civility: The Hidden Racism in Our Obsession with Civility (Beacon).

Find more resources for Developing Young Leaders in our lib guide.

TWO

Inspire an intergenerational slate of creation care leaders – for adults: Matthew Fox: Essential Writings on Creation Spirituality (Orbis); for adults and youth: The Water Defenders: How Ordinary People Saved a Country from Corporate Greed (Beacon; the story of El Salvador’s fight for clean water) and for younger ones: A Kid’s Guide to Saving the Planet: It’s Not Hopeless and We’re not Helpless (Beaming).

Don’t miss our Listening to Nature recorded worship for the 2nd Sunday of Easter, created in collaboration with Lutherans Restoring Creation.

THREE

Congregational leaders will find a roadmap through trauma toward hope in Walter Brueggemann and Brent Strawn’s latest, Returning from the Abyss: Pivotal Moments in the Book of Jeremiah (WJK) – part Bible study, part leader guide.

If the trauma is more personal, read Professional Christian: Being Fully Yourself in the Spotlight of Public Ministry (WJK) for encouragement and well-being advice from peers.

FOUR

When the pastoral care role is taken on by family, please read Already Toast: Caregiving and Burnout in America (Beacon) – the story of “one woman’s struggle to care of her seriously ill” spouse – which reveals the role unpaid family caregivers play in a society devoid of meaningful supports.

Find additional means to care for caregivers in our lib guide.

FIVE

Guide families into a sense of spaciousness and grace with Julia Kuo’s lovely Let’s Do Everything and Nothing (MacKids); the accompanying activity kit (though oxymoronic) deepens the invitations to simplicity.

Inspire further forays into minimalism with Jen Crow’s Take What You Need: Life Lessons after Losing Everything (Broadleaf).

Find additional resources to explore and encourage simplicity and minimalism in our lib guide.

SIX

Help your congregation become a safe haven for all who need a place to belong with wisdom from A Civic Virus? New Study Explores People’s Struggles to Find Belonging and Hope (Convergence).