This past Saturday, September 14th, S.O.S. C.A.N. hosted a Strategy Breakfast in the fellowship hall of Bethany United Methodist Church. It was attended by 44 faith based leaders, including newly appointed NYC Councilwoman Laurie Cumbo. At this breakfast, Rev. Jones, the Clergy Liaison for S.O.S., strategized with the faith leaders about how to assist and embrace today’s young people.
|Rev. Jones with Councilwoman Laurie Cumbo|
The session began with Brandon Gibson, coordinator of “Make It Happen,” a program geared towards helping young men of color between the ages of 16 and 24 overcome experiences with violence, and succeed in spite of those experiences. Rev. Jones and Joy Brown shared their vision for an upcoming youth summit entitled “Power Filled Me: An Opportunity to Hear our Youth”, scheduled for October 23rd at Union United Methodist Church, (121 New York Ave) from 6-8:30pm. “Power Filled Me” will be an opportunity for young people to sit on a panel and speak to adults in their neighborhood about their thoughts and what motivates them, along with what it is they need from parents and the community.
|Brandon Gibson, coordinator of Make It Happen!, speaks to clergy about his program|
Also discussed were “Peace Month” initiatives, including the 2nd annual “Faith Walk with Prayers” on October 27th, where faith leaders will be gathering on the corner of Nostrand Ave and St. John’s Place, walking, singing, and praying on every corner, ending at Troy Ave and continuing inside Beulah Church of the Nazarene for fellowship and refreshments. Rev. Jones asked congregations to host nonviolence services the first two weekends of October. The session ended with networking between leaders and volunteers. According to Rev. Jones, “This was our best breakfast yet. It was emotional, powerful, gut-wrenching, and so passionate.”