2017 Worship & Prayer
The conference worship experiences are always a very formative and enlivening part of our weekend of education and advocacy. As an organization that draws diverse Christians from all across the United States and beyond, we strive to allow a variety of gifts from the various Christian churches and communities to find expression in an harmonious way as we build upon areas of commonality and allow ourselves to be stretched to embrace new worship experiences. Similarly, we allow our imaginations and vision for worship to be expanded by each year’s conference theme and the perspectives of the various workshops, plenaries, and legislative needs that are presented.
Preachers for Prayer and Worship Events
Tamika D. Mallory
National Co-Chair, Women’s March on Washington;
Former Executive Director, National Action NetworkView video of keynote.
Rev. Dr. J. Herbert Nelson, II
Stated Clerk, General Assembly
of the Presbyterian Church (USA)
View video of keynote.
Music & Arts Ministry for the 2017 National Gathering
View the slides from the Opening Celebration (PDF).
Rev. Tracy Howe-Wispelwey
Director, Restoration Village Arts
Tracy has been a touring artist creating music at the intersections of faith and justice. She and her family live in Charlottesville, Va. An ordained United Church of Christ minister leading university students and justice ministries at Westminster Presbyterian Church PC(USA), Tracy works to build up capacity for justice movements in Charlottesville and all over the world through support for the arts and especially through Restoration Village Arts, which she founded in 2000. It presently facilitates local and international collaboration with artists, communities and organizations to produce music, liturgy and advocacy resources in support of peace, love and justice work.
Learn more about Restoration Village Arts.
In preparation for the EAD weekend in Washington D.C., he wrote:
Excited for the weekend!
Gotta sleep super early this evening
Cause very early in the morning I’m leaving
The last time I was there, I was in the 8th grade
Dang I’m growing old, that’s over a decade
10 years later, more memories to be made
last time was with my class, this time is with my neighbor
Last time I was a student, this time I’m doing labor
last time was way before I even knew my major,
it was before I learned the use of a razor, and
was prior to my realization of putting words into paper.
That’s my life in a snap shot
The following year the eagles were my mascot
Then it was the raiders but more recently the bull dogs
was my last stop.
Hamza out (mic drop)
At the conclusion of the first full day of the conference, Ahmed wrote the following poetic reflection:
Listening to great speakers wise words spoken,
from my slumber beneath my blanket of comfort I’ve been reawoken
For those not present this poem will serve as your token
many of the things I’ve heard will leave your heart broken and your eyes soaken
But the promise of my Lord is what keeps me hoping. it’s what keeps me going
I just got to do my part and leave the rest to my Lord who is all knowing.
The speeches taught me to speak truth to power.
Truth is hard to swallow cause its taste is sour
Whereas falsehood has a sweetness that many are ready to devour
Amidst adversity we must remain brave and not allow ourselves to cower
And I’m thankful to the Lord for allowing me to partake in this journey of ours
The weather here like our situation is one of slight showers
But after the storms clear, the clouds disappear and the sun manifests its power.