The 4th Monday of each month Bend Community Healing hosts a meeting of “Coming To the Table,” an organization dedicated to promoting a just and truthful society that acknowledges and seeks to heal from the racial wounds of the past—from slavery and the many forms of racism it spawned.
Why is this necessary and why have we chosen to host this at BCH?
In a nutshell, this group is based on the belief that, in William Faulkner's words, "The past isn't dead; it's not even past."
We believe that slavery and racism are symptoms of a persistent disease that our country has not yet healed from that perpetuates awful injustice and that keeps us all from reaching our full potential as individuals and as a nation. Coming together to look at and feel these energies is a form of community healing, and, we believe, can help us with the process of healing this disease.
Everyone, of any political persuasion, who is willing to speak and listen respectfully is welcome to this discussion.
Coming to the Table operates with the following goals:
- Uncovering History: researching, acknowledging, and sharing personal, family, community, state, and national histories of race with openness and honesty
- Making Connections: connecting to others within and across racial lines in order to develop and deepen relationships
- Working Toward Healing: exploring how we can heal together through dialogue, reunion, ritual, meditation, prayer, ceremony, the arts, apology and other methods
- Taking Action: actively seeking to dismantle systems of racial inequality, injustice, and oppression; to work for the transformation of our nation.
And the following values:
- Inclusion. We welcome all who wish to join the Coming to the Table conversation and who join us in honoring and committing to these principles.
- Respect and Tolerance. We respect the integrity and value of all people as they seek to understand and respond to their experience of the world and the history and impact of slavery, even if we might disagree with them. To this end, we listen respectfully to each other, practice non-judgmental listening, and refrain from personal attack.
- Honesty, Truthfulness and Transparency. We strive to uncover truth and to speak it with openness and transparency.
- Justice. We accept that there has been significant harm as a result of the legacies and aftermaths of slavery. We strive to identify those harms and to take responsibility for making things right.
- Compassion, Mercy, and Forgiveness. Through compassion and love we strive to show mercy and to forgive ourselves, those who may have done us harm and those who have harmed others.
- Love. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. called his followers to love even those who would do them harm. This love transformed both victim and offender and created a powerful foundation for doing justice and building a beloved community. We strive to do likewise.
- Peace and Nonviolence. We seek to transform conflict through non-violent, non-coercive means so as to achieve a peaceful community.
- Reconciliation. We strive for racial reconciliation through a journey of seeking peace, justice, mercy and truth.
The meeting is free; it will take place at Bend Community Healing, 155 SW Century Drive, Ste 113.
For questions or to reserve a spot call us at 541-322-9642.