May 4 6:30 – 8:30 pm | Lancaster County Event Center, 4100 N 84th St Lincoln, NE 68507
Want to make a difference in our community – JUST SHOW UP at the Nehemiah Assembly on Thursday evening, May 4 at the Lancaster County Event Center.
Our scriptures show that justice means addressing the root causes of problems to ensure fair treatment of all people, especially the poor, the widow, and the orphan. In our modern context, that looks like holding local leaders accountable for the fair treatment of the most vulnerable in our community.
The two justice issues our interfaith Justice in Action group, of which we are founding members, has chosen to work on and hold our civic leaders accountable for are criminal justice reform and mental health issues. People have been working behind the scenes to research the issues, narrow down the issues to something that our community leaders can actually take concrete action on, and come up with solutions.
On May 4 we will hear the results of that work, and gather to hold our leaders accountable for doing something about these issues.
Why do we think we can make an impact?
In our society, power comes from two sources: organized money and organized people. We have all seen people or companies use money to influence how systems operate. But organized people can influence how systems operate too.
The biblical story of Nehemiah provides an example of powerless people coming together to do justice. The story goes like this… Nehemiah is a member of the king’s court in Babylon and he gets permission from the king to go home to Jerusalem to rebuild the wall around the city. When he gets there, he discovers there has been a terrible drought, which has caused a famine, and people have had to take out loans just to do basic things like buy food and pay taxes. When the people couldn’t repay the loans, the nobles and officials took everything. Their fields, vineyards, and orchards, and even forced people to sell their children into slavery to pay their debts.
The people of Jerusalem raised a cry of injustice to Nehemiah, and he knew the injustice must stop, but he knew that he alone could not put a stop to it. Verse seven of chapter five tells us that Nehemiah organized a great assembly of all the people who were trying to live out their lives in the midst of these conditions, and he brought the nobles and officials before that assembly. He said to the nobles and officials, “this is not right and it must stop. What has been taken from these people must be returned.” And when pressed during this assembly, the nobles and officials agreed to restore everything they had taken from the people, and they did as they had promised.
As many faith communities across Lancaster County, we can bring people together to transform systems and do justice, and that’s what we are going to do on May 4. We will gather in mass and present our leaders with well researched solutions to some of our community’s most pressing problems.
They will see the power of what we hope is over 1000 people gathered who by our very presence are saying we care, and we will hold our leaders accountable for a better society.
This will only work if YOU show up! That’s all you have to do, because numbers matter. Please join us.
Need a ride? Let us know and we’ll arrange one for you.