Workshop Leaders: Martha Rollins & Danita Rountree Green

Workshop Title: “Coming To The Table: Having the Clumsy, Courageous Conversation on Race

Inspired by the vision of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., in his “I Have a Dream” speech that one day “the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood, two women (with different backgrounds but share the same history) have come together at the table. But can descendants of slaves and of the enslavers form rich and lasting relationships? How are they promoting racial equality and social justice at their own dinner tables? Join Coming To The Table-RVA Co-conveners Martha Rollins and Danita Rountree Green as they explore the challenges of reaching across racial, political and societal lines together.

Coming To The Table-RVA is part of a national organization committed to racial healing and social equity. Coming To The Table’s vision is for a just and truthful society that acknowledges and seeks to heal from the racial wounds of the past by: Uncovering History, Making Connections, Working Toward Healing, and Taking Action.

Martha Rollins

Martha Rollins

Martha Rollins is a community activist and philanthropist who grew up in Martinsville and graduated from Duke University with degrees in religion and teaching. In 1963 she completed an internship at the Henry Street Settlement in New York City. After moving with her husband to Richmond, she joined other residents of the city’s Carillon neighborhood to fight racially discriminatory real estate practices, thereby helping it become, and remain, a diverse neighborhood stabilized by a culture of friendship.

In 1975 she established Martha’s Mixture, a popular antique shop that helped anchor the revitalization of Carytown, a local shopping district. Combining her passion for diverse communities, social justice, and economic development, she used her business skills and networks to establish Boaz & Ruth, a faith-based nonprofit located in an economically challenged neighborhood. Working with neighbors, Boaz & Ruth intertwined a second-chance reentry program with social enterprises, including two thrift stores, a café, and furniture refinishing, moving, and construction services, as well as restoring more than a dozen abandoned buildings in the area.

Her success has attracted national attention and in 2006 she was one of the recipients of the inaugural Purpose Prize, which recognizes individuals over age 60 who have developed innovative ways to address the country’s biggest social problems. Before retiring from Boaz & Ruth in 2013, Martha Rollins, along with 100 nonprofit leaders, was honored at the White House by President Obama. In 2017, Martha received the Virginia Women in History award. (Biography from the Library of Virginia)

Danita Rountree Green

Danita Rountree Green

Danita Rountree Green (R Satiafa) is an author and trauma healing facilitator, conducting workshops addressing community trauma and race related issues. A trained therapeutic art and restorative language specialist, Danita uses storytelling to unravel self-defeating narratives, helping people move through personal, community and historical trauma. As co-convener of Coming To The Table – RVA, she facilitates the constructive yet clumsy conversation on race and the legacy of the American Slave Trade.

With five national tours, Danita has shared the stage with Iyanla Vanzant, Levar Burton and Dr. Bernice King. Her work has been featured in Style, Essence and Richmond Magazines as well as USA TODAY and The Wall Street Journal. In 2013, she served as a chairperson for the 8th Annual Arts in Society Conference held in Budapest, Hungary, where she presented her research on restorative language to delegates from 27 countries. At home, she is the art specialist for the City of Richmond, creating therapeutic word-based programs for children and adults.

Danita is best known for The Love Locked Down Series – a collection of works that address the effect of prison culture, and AND THEN There’s Hope , a multi-dimensional fine art program targeting Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE). Her other titles include Broom Jumping: A Celebration of Love (Entertaining Ideas) and Grandmother’s Gift of Memories: A keepsake Journal for African American Women (Broadway Books).

With degrees from both the University of Virginia and the Maryland University of Integrative Health, Danita believes language leads change. She is currently vice Chair of the Richmond Public Library Board of Trustees and Executive Liaison for The Peace Culture Club, an artists consortium cultivating a generation of resilient non-violent youth.

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2016 Schedule and Workshops

WomanKind was founded by women to give women a safe space to explore topics of faith in a supportive, encouraging environment. To preserve the special experience of WomanKind, the events on February 23 & 24 are open to women only.

Friday, February 23
6:00 p.m. Registration and Reception
7:30 p.m.  Keynote: The Reverend Neichelle R. Guidry, Liaison to Worship and Arts Ministries, Office of the Senior Pastor at Trinity United Church of Christ, Chicago, and author of Curating a World: Sermonic Words from a Young Woman Who Preaches
9:00 p.m. Adjourn
Saturday, February 24
8:15 a.m. - 9:00 a.m. Registration and Coffee
9:00 a.m. Hymn Sing
9:30 a.m. Keynote:  Sara Miles,  founder The Food Pantry , former Director of Ministry at St. Gregory of Nyssa Episcopal Church in San Francisco, and author of Take This Bread: A Radical Conversion, Jesus Freak: Feeding Healing Raising the Dead, and City of God: Faith in the Streets
11:15 a.m. Workshops, Session 1 **
12:30 p.m. Lunch and Book Signing
1:30 p.m. Workshops, Session 2 **
2:45 p.m. Holy Eucharist: The Reverend Emily Scott, ordained Evangelical Lutheran pastor and founder of St. Lydia’s, a Dinner Church in New York, Preacher and Celebrant
4:30 p.m.  Adjourn
 ** These workshops will be offered in the morning and the afternoon. Please select your preferences on the registration page when you indicate the registration you desire.

 

Emily Scott - The Discomforting Table: The Power of Table Practice to Nurture Justice Making

Emily Scott

Emily Scott

“The world begins at a kitchen table,” writes poet Joy Harjo. Perhaps the revolution begins at the table too. Emily Scott, former and founding pastor of St. Lydia’s Dinner Church in Brooklyn, will share stories drawn from eight years sharing a “sacred meal” around the tables and St. Lydia’s. What does it mean when communion is a meal, cooked with human hands, and shared at the tables? How does it change our experience of the Eucharist, and our relationship to hunger? At the table, the St. Lydia’s community developed a set of practices that equipped them to turn toward their neighbors, build relationships across boundaries, and work together for justice. This workshop will explore the power of practice in forming a justice-focused congregation, and how these practices might be explored in a wide variety of church settings, like yours!

Martha Rollins and Danita Rountree Green - Coming to the Table: Having the Clumsy, Courageous Conversation on Race

Danita Rountree Green

Danita Rountree Green

5669dd323d916.image

Martha Rollins

Inspired by the vision of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., in his “I Have a Dream” speech that one day “the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood, two women (with different backgrounds but share the same history) have come together at the table. But can descendants of slaves and of the enslavers form rich and lasting relationships? How are they promoting racial equality and social justice at their own dinner tables? Join Coming To The Table-RVA Co-conveners Martha Rollins and Danita Rountree Green as they explore the challenges of reaching across racial, political and societal lines together. Coming To The Table-RVA is part of a national organization committed to racial healing and social equity. Coming To The Table’s vision is for a just and truthful society that acknowledges and seeks to heal from the racial wounds of the past by: Uncovering History, Making Connections, Working Toward Healing, and Taking Action.

Martha Bourlakas - Maw’s Homemade Applesauce, or What Our Meal Memories Teach Us About the Authentic Hospitality of Jesus Christ

Martha Bourlakas

Martha Bourlakas

Please come to this workshop hungry. Hungry for words. Hungry to share the significant meal memories of your life. Hungry to hear and connect with the stories of others. In sharing our stories about the meals of our lives, we will distill the important words and themes of authentic Christian hospitality, far more buttery and divine than secular definitions of hospitality. We will chew on the individual and corporate roles we have in bringing more Christian hospitality into the world. We will work on a menu of ways to create food community and hope for people who desperately need to share a bounteous meal with people who love.

Dana Corsello - The Body, the Blood, the Intimacy:  What it Really Means to Get Real with Jesus

Dana Corsello

Dana Corsello

This workshop will explore the theology of the Last Supper through scripture, literature, and film as a means of feeling true intimacy with God and by extension with one another.

Ana Hernandez - Listening Around the Table: Skills for Healthy Community Life

Ana Hernandez

Ana Hernandez

How can we be God for one another? How can we hear one another into speech? In this workshop we will learn to use simple chants as icons of divine presence. We'll begin by finding and nurturing God within, then look for it in those around us. We will find places of comfort and repose, and also begin to negotiate the places where we may not be very comfortable at all! When we show up as our authentic selves, listen deeply, and encourage one another, channels of grace and play appear, co-creation and possibility walk into the room and our hearts open to one another. When we make time to reflect on our lives as images of divine presence, we find ways to make more love. We become divine love as we join one another in attending to the sense of how we come together, by reflecting on the stories we tell ourselves, and by learning to make our lives a continual offering.

Elaine Ellis Thomas and Brenda Brown-Grooms - Hate Has No Home Here:  Proclaiming God’s Word in the Public Sphere

Brenda Brown-Grooms

Brenda Brown-Grooms

Elaine Ellis Thomas

Elaine Ellis Thomas

When waves of white supremacists, white nationalists, and Ku Klux Klan descended on Charlottesville in the summer of 2017, it took a broad cross-section of the community, including faith leaders, to plan and execute the counter protests.  People came together across age, class, ethnicity, religion, and race to proclaim that hate has no place here.  Pastors Brenda Brown-Grooms and Elaine Ellis Thomas helped lead the coordinated efforts to stand in the breach between the sowers of hate and those they sought to harm.  Throughout the experience, people stayed grounded in prayer, trust, collaboration and courage. Come to the workshop to learn how what happened in Charlottesville became a symbol of love over fear.

Phoebe Roaf - The Heart of the Matter:  Examining Jeremiah's Understanding of God's Justice and Judgment

Phoebe Roaf

Phoebe Roaf

The Old Testament prophet Jeremiah lived during a period of great upheaval in Israel's history.  He experienced the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple, a time of intense suffering for his people.  While Jeremiah lamented the sinfulness of his generation, he also conveyed a sense of hope for the future.  In this workshop, we will explore the parallels between life during the time of Jeremiah and our lives as 21st century Americans.  What does God's judgment look like?  What does God's justice look like?  Where are the signs of hope in today's world?  Together we will consider how to remain faithful to God's priorities and have a sense of hope for the future.

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2018 Schedule and Workshops

WomanKind was founded by women to give women a safe space to explore topics of faith in a supportive, encouraging environment. To preserve the special experience of WomanKind, the events on February 23 & 24 are open to women only.

Friday, February 23
6:00 p.m. Registration and Reception
7:30 p.m.  Keynote: The Reverend Neichelle R. Guidry, Liaison to Worship and Arts Ministries, Office of the Senior Pastor at Trinity United Church of Christ, Chicago, and author of Curating a World: Sermonic Words from a Young Woman Who Preaches
9:00 p.m. Adjourn
Saturday, February 24
8:15 a.m. - 9:00 a.m. Registration and Coffee
9:00 a.m. Hymn Sing
9:30 a.m. Keynote:  Sara Miles,  founder The Food Pantry , former Director of Ministry at St. Gregory of Nyssa Episcopal Church in San Francisco, and author of Take This Bread: A Radical Conversion, Jesus Freak: Feeding Healing Raising the Dead, and City of God: Faith in the Streets
11:15 a.m. Workshops, Session 1 **
12:30 p.m. Lunch and Book Signing
1:30 p.m. Workshops, Session 2 **
2:45 p.m. Holy Eucharist: The Reverend Emily Scott, ordained Evangelical Lutheran pastor and founder of St. Lydia’s, a Dinner Church in New York, Preacher and Celebrant
4:30 p.m.  Adjourn
 ** These workshops will be offered in the morning and the afternoon. Please select your preferences on the registration page when you indicate the registration you desire.

 

Emily Scott - The Discomforting Table: The Power of Table Practice to Nurture Justice Making

Emily Scott

Emily Scott

“The world begins at a kitchen table,” writes poet Joy Harjo. Perhaps the revolution begins at the table too. Emily Scott, former and founding pastor of St. Lydia’s Dinner Church in Brooklyn, will share stories drawn from eight years sharing a “sacred meal” around the tables and St. Lydia’s. What does it mean when communion is a meal, cooked with human hands, and shared at the tables? How does it change our experience of the Eucharist, and our relationship to hunger? At the table, the St. Lydia’s community developed a set of practices that equipped them to turn toward their neighbors, build relationships across boundaries, and work together for justice. This workshop will explore the power of practice in forming a justice-focused congregation, and how these practices might be explored in a wide variety of church settings, like yours!

Martha Rollins and Danita Rountree Green - Coming to the Table: Having the Clumsy, Courageous Conversation on Race

Danita Rountree Green

Danita Rountree Green

5669dd323d916.image

Martha Rollins

Inspired by the vision of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., in his “I Have a Dream” speech that one day “the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood, two women (with different backgrounds but share the same history) have come together at the table. But can descendants of slaves and of the enslavers form rich and lasting relationships? How are they promoting racial equality and social justice at their own dinner tables? Join Coming To The Table-RVA Co-conveners Martha Rollins and Danita Rountree Green as they explore the challenges of reaching across racial, political and societal lines together. Coming To The Table-RVA is part of a national organization committed to racial healing and social equity. Coming To The Table’s vision is for a just and truthful society that acknowledges and seeks to heal from the racial wounds of the past by: Uncovering History, Making Connections, Working Toward Healing, and Taking Action.

Martha Bourlakas - Maw’s Homemade Applesauce, or What Our Meal Memories Teach Us About the Authentic Hospitality of Jesus Christ

Martha Bourlakas

Martha Bourlakas

Please come to this workshop hungry. Hungry for words. Hungry to share the significant meal memories of your life. Hungry to hear and connect with the stories of others. In sharing our stories about the meals of our lives, we will distill the important words and themes of authentic Christian hospitality, far more buttery and divine than secular definitions of hospitality. We will chew on the individual and corporate roles we have in bringing more Christian hospitality into the world. We will work on a menu of ways to create food community and hope for people who desperately need to share a bounteous meal with people who love.

Dana Corsello - The Body, the Blood, the Intimacy:  What it Really Means to Get Real with Jesus

Dana Corsello

Dana Corsello

This workshop will explore the theology of the Last Supper through scripture, literature, and film as a means of feeling true intimacy with God and by extension with one another.

Ana Hernandez - Listening Around the Table: Skills for Healthy Community Life

Ana Hernandez

Ana Hernandez

How can we be God for one another? How can we hear one another into speech? In this workshop we will learn to use simple chants as icons of divine presence. We'll begin by finding and nurturing God within, then look for it in those around us. We will find places of comfort and repose, and also begin to negotiate the places where we may not be very comfortable at all! When we show up as our authentic selves, listen deeply, and encourage one another, channels of grace and play appear, co-creation and possibility walk into the room and our hearts open to one another. When we make time to reflect on our lives as images of divine presence, we find ways to make more love. We become divine love as we join one another in attending to the sense of how we come together, by reflecting on the stories we tell ourselves, and by learning to make our lives a continual offering.

Elaine Ellis Thomas and Brenda Brown-Grooms - Hate Has No Home Here:  Proclaiming God’s Word in the Public Sphere

Brenda Brown-Grooms

Brenda Brown-Grooms

Elaine Ellis Thomas

Elaine Ellis Thomas

When waves of white supremacists, white nationalists, and Ku Klux Klan descended on Charlottesville in the summer of 2017, it took a broad cross-section of the community, including faith leaders, to plan and execute the counter protests.  People came together across age, class, ethnicity, religion, and race to proclaim that hate has no place here.  Pastors Brenda Brown-Grooms and Elaine Ellis Thomas helped lead the coordinated efforts to stand in the breach between the sowers of hate and those they sought to harm.  Throughout the experience, people stayed grounded in prayer, trust, collaboration and courage. Come to the workshop to learn how what happened in Charlottesville became a symbol of love over fear.

Phoebe Roaf - The Heart of the Matter:  Examining Jeremiah's Understanding of God's Justice and Judgment

Phoebe Roaf

Phoebe Roaf

The Old Testament prophet Jeremiah lived during a period of great upheaval in Israel's history.  He experienced the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple, a time of intense suffering for his people.  While Jeremiah lamented the sinfulness of his generation, he also conveyed a sense of hope for the future.  In this workshop, we will explore the parallels between life during the time of Jeremiah and our lives as 21st century Americans.  What does God's judgment look like?  What does God's justice look like?  Where are the signs of hope in today's world?  Together we will consider how to remain faithful to God's priorities and have a sense of hope for the future.

×