The grassroots organization hopes to reach rare black voters through the church

A grassroots organization in Birmingham is launching a new initiative called the (Re)Vote Black Church Community Voter Project aimed at rare voters and has announced the first round of Fellows for the project.

“Historically, the church has served as a hub, and we believe it’s important to go back to those roots in order to build stronger communities,” said Cara McClure, founder of Faith and Works, a Birmingham-based organization with a mission has to gain voting rights disenfranchised communities. “(Re)Vote The primary goals of the Black Church Community Voter Project are to organize and help rebuild the relationship between the church and the community. We can rebuild our political clout when community activists and faith leaders work together to increase voter engagement, education and participation.”

The project will use non-traditional outreach to meet unregistered, low-bias voters where they are. McClure said the project was modeled after Jesus’ approach to evangelism.

“Jesus always met the needs of the people before he assigned them to expand the mission,” McClure said.

Organizers believe that a ministered community “will be an empowered community to serve,” and see this crusade as a solution to voter apathy and low engagement.

The goal is to create at least 300 social and civic initiatives across Alabama by 2026 and to equip and empower communities to set their own agendas based on the needs of their communities. Additionally, the goal is to mass engage at least 20 percent of the population in Jefferson and Madison counties.

The project will create the (Re)Vote Black Church Community Network, a community opportunity to help create and nurture conscious engagement and relationship building between the Black Church and the community to increase voter turnout and Impart citizen and voter competence. The goal is to encourage black voters to vote in every election and to ensure voters are educated on choices and resources available in their local churches.

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“Social justice is not a minor dimension of the gospel—it is essential to it,” said Rev. Dexter Strong, curriculum specialist and trainer for the project. “The good news that Jesus preached to the world is that God destroys systems of injustice and scarcity to restore the eternal kingdom of love and compassion. It is what the Bible calls the Kingdom of God, and Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. called it the “beloved fellowship.” This commitment has political, not partisan, but political consequences. As a politician and minister, I look forward to helping activists and pastors better understand how their potential collaboration could transform our societies for the better.”

Project manager Uche Bean said that faith has been a stabilizing force for black people in many troubles.

“Faith was the only thing we could hold on to as black people, despite enslavement, Jim Crow, racial terror, white supremacy, and the existing structures and institutions that continue to marginalize our communities and threaten the truth and democracy like.” Gerrymandering, redlining and voter suppression,” Bean said. “It is an honor to work toward the goal of eliminating voter apathy, engaging voters who have long been oppressed or repelled, and bridging the gap between community and church. Our faith keeps us going and we will keep fighting because we have nothing to lose but our chains.”

(Re)Vote ) Supporter Dee Reed said the Bible provides countless examples of what is possible through partnership and collaboration.

“Nehemiah joins with the people to rebuild; The widow’s act of faith at Elisha’s side allows her to recover from her husband’s death, and the disciples’ response to Jesus’ call to service and service leads to revival,” Reed said. “Through (Re)Vote’s commitment to connecting the black church, community members and activists, the collective will work together to restore hope and revitalize black voters across the state of Alabama.”

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