Monday, January 22, 2007


UPDATE on the Virginia Legislature

by Ann Rasmussen
Policy Director
Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy

We’ve now flown into the second week of the General Assembly session and our heads are spinning! We’re beginning to see our bills in committee meetings, and we’re keeping a very close eye on our budget amendments, too, though they are much more difficult to track. By the end of this week, the Interfaith Center will have advocated in committee for Del. Cosgrove’s HB 1678 that provides a sales tax exemption for Energy Star appliances during the first weekend of October each year, as well as Cosgrove’s House Resolution HJ 575, which designates the first week of October each year as “Energy Conservation Awareness Week.” We also will have advocated in committee for Sen. Stolle’s SB 1168 that changes the Code of Virginia to allow the state Supreme Court to waive the caps on fees paid to court-appointed attorneys, Del. Hargrove’s bill to abolish the death penalty, and Sen. Ticer’s and Sen. Devolites-Davis’ bills to expand TANF eligibility to include persons convicted of drug felonies who have completed their sentencing.

Additionally, we will have made numerous legislative visits around the issues of payday lending and indigent defense funding. We’re seeing that many of our issues are up against transportation. Anything with a fiscal impact (which is almost everything) faces an upward battle. Legislators are extremely reluctant to designate money in other areas until the transportation budget is laid out. Knowing that we are all in this together – each contributing our own part by making calls or visits to legislators, or writing letters to the editor, or passing on information to our houses of worship – is inspiring to me. Thank you for the role you play in creating a more compassionate Commonwealth!

To track bills in the 2007 General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Virginia, PLEASE CLICK HERE


Rev. William Johnson

Here is an update for Rev. William Johnson's viewing and service from Delma I. Maisonet.

The viewing will be at Mount Rainier Christian Church on Monday January 29, 2007 from 8:30am to 9:30am. Funeral Service from 9:30am to 11:00am. Everyone will meet at the Quantico National Cemetery for his burial (there will be no procession).

Presiding the service will be Rev. Sean Boyd, Pastor at Mount Rainier Christian Church, Malcolm Smith, Gary Koontz, and Boyce Truesdale.

Mount Rainier Christian Church is located at 4001 33rd. St., Mount Rainier, MD 20712.

Friday, January 19, 2007



The Maryland Interfaith Legislative Committee (MILC) has prioritized five issues for interfaith legislative advocacy during the 2007 session of the Maryland General Assembly. These are:

  • Homelessness and Affordable Housing

  • Medical Care Access

  • Energy Assistance

  • Welfare

  • Immigrants

  • For more information, PLEASE CLICK HERE.



    You are Cordially Invited To
    An Ecumenical Luncheon for DC Area Clergy

    Hosted By Rev. Conrad A. Braaten
    Senior Pastor, Lutheran Church of the Reformation

    An exceptional opportunity to hear and dialogue with
    internationally acclaimed speaker and author
    The Rev. Naim Ateek
    Director, Sabeel Ecumenical Theology Center Jerusalem

    Palestinian and U.S. Christians:
    Seeking a Just Peace in the Holy Land

    Tuesday, February 13, 2007
    11:30 am – 1:30 pm

    Location: Lutheran Church of the Reformation
    212 E. Capitol St. NE, Washington, DC
    Tel. 202 543 4200

    Middle Eastern Buffet Luncheon & Event are Free
    Reservations required by Friday, February 9, 2007
    For directions and parking information,
    please visit or call 202 543 4200

    Sponsors: Washington Interfaith Alliance for Middle East Peace
    Middle East Working Group of the Metro DC Synod,
    Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

    Thursday, January 18, 2007



    Today, January 18th, is Oscar Haynes' birthday. Although he still looks and acts like a man of great health in his sixties, Haynes is today 91 years young. He continues to be a very active leader in his congregation, in the denomination, and at the Disciples Center for Public Witness.

    Among his many forms of service to God and the Church, Haynes is an Elder and Trustee Emeritus at Twelfth Street Christian Church, a member of the Board of Directors of the National City Christian Church Foundation, a member of the Board of Directors of Disciples Home Missions, and the Distinguished Senior Advisor for Institutional Development and Church Relations at the Disciples Center for Public Witness. He is also the editor and publisher of The Oldtimers' Grapevine.

    In the past, Haynes has served as moderator of the Christian Church Capital Area, President of the National Convocation, President of the Capital Press Club, President of the Greenwood Cemeteries Properties in Nashville (TN), and moderator of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).

    According to Haynes, "My objective in life is, has been and always will be "To live my life in hopes of making life better for my sisters and brothers everywhere. This includes persons of all races, ethnicities, and religions. Even as I have faced discrimination and struggled against injustice, I have always strived to be a bridge builder."

    The Disciples Advocacy and Witness Network of the Christian Church Capital Area joins his family, friends, and colleagues throughout the church to celebrate the 91st birthday of this great man of God. May God continue to bless Oscar Haynes, and through him--his friendship, his service, and his example--continue to bless all of us. Let the church say, "Amen--and amen!"

    Sunday, January 14, 2007



    The Disciples Advocacy and Witness Network of the Christian Church Capital Area joins others within our region, throughout our denomination, across our nation, and around the globe to honor the birthday, life, mission and vision of one of America's strongest advocates for justice and peace: Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

    Join us as we boldly but humbly try to keep alive Dr. King's dream for all God's children. The demonic powers of racism, poverty and violence still plague our region, our denomination, our nation and our world. Help us confront them with the love of God, the gospel of Jesus Christ, and Dr. King's vision of 'the beloved community.'


    CLICK HERE to watch Dr. King's "I Have a Dream" Speech.

    CLICK HERE to read Dr. King's Letter from the Birmingham Jail.

    CLICK HERE to read Dr. King's speech to striking sanitation workers in Memphis.

    CLICK HERE to read Dr. King's speech on Vietnam.

    Saturday, January 13, 2007



    Join Us As We Celebrate the Life and Work of Dr. King

    SATURDAY, JANUARY 13, 2007 at 11 AM
    Second Christian Church
    65 W North Street
    Hagerstown, MD

    SATURDAY, JANUARY 13th at 2 PM
    Martin Luther King , Jr., Commemorative Lecture
    Enoch Pratt Free Library
    Baltimore, MD
    Special Guest Speaker: Dr. Suzan Johnson Cook, Senior Pastor and Founder of Believers Christian Fellowship Church in Harlem, and first woman elected president of the Hampton Ministers Conference.

    SUNDAY, JANUARY 14th at 3 PM
    Annual InterFaith Service for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
    Sponsored by Interfaith Conference of Metropolitan Washington
    Israel Baptist Church
    1251 Saratoga Avenue, NE (19th and Rhode Island NE)
    Washington, DC
    Featuring: Bishop Thomas L Hoyt, Leader of the Mid-Atlantic Region of the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church.

    SUNDAY, JANUARY 14th at 4 PM
    North Chevy Chase Christian Church
    8814 Kensington Parkway
    Chevy Chase, MD
    Special Guests at Sunday's Service:
    Rev. Grayland Hagler,
    Senior Pastor of Plymouth Congregational United Church of Christ in Washington, DC.
    Rev. Noemi Mena,
    Associate Pastor for Hispanic Ministries at National City Christian Church in Washington, DC.

    The icon, 'Martin Luther King of Georgia,' is by Brother R. Lentz, OFM. This and more icons can be found at

    Wednesday, January 10, 2007



    Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., said, "There is nothing but a lack of social vision to prevent us from paying an adequate wage to everyone, whether he be a hospital worker, laundry worker, maid or day laborer."

    On Wednesday, January 10, 2007, members of the U. S. House of Representatives displayed some social vision and voted overwhelmingly (315-116) in favor of a bill to increase the federal minimum wage. The bill, known as the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2007 (H. R. 2), calls for an increase in the minimum wage from $5.15 to $7.25 an hour.

    The proposed legislation was strongly supported by a broad coalition of Christians and other people of faith, including members, activists and leaders of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).

    MANY THANKS to everyone who signed letters or petitions to Congress and/or contacted her or his Representative during National Call-In Day. As the leaders of the multi-faith Let Justice Roll Campaign often say, "A job should keep you out of poverty--not keep you in it." With your help, we've made progress in the right direction. Now it's on to the Senate!

    To read a letter sent by over 1000 clergy and religious leaders, PLEASE CLICK HERE.

    To learn more about the Minimum Wage Campaign, PLEASE CLICK HERE.

    To read the Disciples resolution on the living wage passed at the 2005 General Assembly in Portland, PLEASE CLICK HERE.

    Saturday, January 06, 2007



    The DISCIPLES ADVOCACY and WITNESS NETWORK (DAWN) of the Christian Church Capital Area hopes you had a very merry Christmas and, if you celebrated it, a wonderful and enriching Kwanzaa.

    On this holy Feast of the Epiphany, we wish you a blessed new year and pray that you will have many opportunities to share and receive gifts--especially the gifts of God's compassion, justice and peace.

    The icon, "The Holy Epiphany," is the work of Lewis Williams. This and other icons can be found at Bridge Building Images.


    March 9 - 12, 2007, Crystal City, VA (near Washington, DC)
    To get more information, PLEASE CLICK HERE.