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2014-2021 Press Releases

Faith Leaders Will Train 200 Women for Social Justice Action at “Interrupting Indifference: Jesus, Justice and the Bible”

July 29-August 2 in Chicago

Chicago’s groups are organizing to halt indifference to police brutality, mass incarceration, and economic inequality. More than 200 women from around the country will come to Chicago from July 29 to August 2 to prepare for bold, faith-based justice action at “Interrupting Indifference: Jesus, Justice and the Bible,” the quadrennial United Methodist Women National Seminar.

United Methodist Women leaders and partner Chicago-area group leaders will equip participants with skills to effect change in their home communities.

United Methodist Women Leader Bios:

Carol Barton serves as an executive for community action with United Methodist Women. She works to engage United Methodist Women members in action for social justice as a public witness to our faith. Barton is the lead staff on United Methodist Women’s Immigrant and Civil Rights Initiative and serves on the church-wide United Methodist Immigration Task Force.

Jennifer McCallum is the executive secretary of Social Justice Education with United Methodist Women. McCallum custom designs and facilitates educational seminars on social justice issues from a perspective of faith for groups from across the country and around the world. Prior to working for United Methodist Women, she worked with the American Red Cross recruiting and training volunteers.

Janis Rosheuvel serves as executive secretary for racial justice for United Methodist Women.  Prior to United Methodist Women, Janis worked in the fields of international development and gender rights. Rosheuvel was awarded a Fullbright Scholarship from 2011-12 to South Africa, where she documented the work of social movements organized by working-class activists.

Partner Leader Bios:

Rev. Robert E. Biekman (“Pastor B”) serves as senior pastor of Maple Park United Methodist Church (Chicago) and Urban Ministry coordinator for the Northern Illinois Conference of the United Methodist Church. The Community Renewal Society awarded Pastor B. their 2011 John Purdy, Sr. Leadership Award for his leadership of the High HOPES Campaign to reduce suspensions and expulsion of Chicago public school students.

Charlene A. Carruthers is the national director of the Black Youth Project 100 (BYP 100). Charlene is a political organizer with over 10 years of experience in racial justice and youth leadership development work. BYP100 is an activist, member-led organization of black 18 to 35-year-olds dedicated to creating justice and freedom for all black people.

Bishop Sally Dyck was ordained as an elder in 1981, was consecrated as a bishop in 2004, and was sent that year to lead the Minnesota Area of the United Methodist Church. In September 2012, Bishop Dyck was reassigned to the Northern Illinois Annual Conference. She received her theological education from Boston University School of Theology, the University of Geneva/World Council of Churches, and United Theological Seminary, Dayton, Ohio (1989). Bishop Dyck values the teaching of the United Methodist heritage that personal piety (personal holiness) is inextricably woven into peace and justice advocacy (social holiness).

Page May is a Chicago-based organizer with We Charge Genocide. She is one of the eight youth delegates who traveled to the United Nations and the lead author of the shadow report submitted to the U.N. Committee Against Torture.

Interview Inquiries:

For interview inquiries for the leaders listed above or inquiries related to the Mass Incarceration and Criminal Justice Reform Town Hall Meeting or Public Accountability Meeting on Police Brutality and Criminal Justice Reform, please contact Yvette Moore – United Methodist Women’s Director of Communications –, 212-870-3822.

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