How to explain that we will be reading a book together, but we are not a “book club?” One of the biggest lessons for me, personally, has been how important building trust together is as we try to dig into our own roles supporting white supremacy culture and other oppressive systems. For issues that are so critical, so life-or-death, and so urgent, it’s a bit confusing for me to realize we needed to slow down. We needed to slow down to really get to know each other and build trust so calling each other in (or out, whichever you prefer) and challenging each other onRead More →

We are still meeting, monthly. However, the two men in our group left last spring. Due to health reasons I was not at either of the meetings when they explained their decisions. As I’m writing this, realizing I’m not 100% sure why they left (I have a pretty good sense about it — they didn’t like being put on the spot, is my perception of it) and understanding that is important. At some point, I may reach out to one of them to talk through their reasoning. Honestly, though, “what the white men feel about this” doesn’t feel like a top priority at the moment.*Read More →

We are no longer working with our wonderful consultant, Farron. We harmed them through racist actions and inactions. We were not ready for the depth of challenges they offered. We took the summer off, as several of us were going to be unavailable. Our work together is so tender, we want to have everyone together as much as possible. We are meeting later this month to process our next steps. This work is scary and difficult and also spiritually rich. We are faith-led people, and this has helped guide us.Read More →

It’s been a challenging and powerful time for the group. With the help of our consultant, we have been looking at our own behaviors, words, choices, and power. What does it mean to be “dismantling white supremacy?” What is “accountability?” We have a lot of work to do, but we are six white people committed to doing the work together. Our work with the consultant has mostly consisted of me meeting with Farron to process the shift that I have felt, personally, as I have (personally, not we as a group) realized I don’t want this to be “just another book group.” I started theRead More →

We’ve got some more time left with Farron, but it has become clear to me that I (and that we we white people) need more support and guidance as we get clear about our work. To be transparent with the fundraising that I’ve started, so I can hire Farron for another ten hours, I’ve set up a gofundme. I’m trying to raise $2,000. If you would like to support this work but don’t want to use gofundme, please feel free to email me at dwsgroups @ grantwinners.net and I will give you my mailing address or paypal or cashapp or venmo account information (I willRead More →

It feels almost like there’s too much going on, too much has happened, to be able to summarize. I’ll touch on some of the happenings… I was able to raise the money –through a “Leadings” grant from my Quaker Meeting and donations from individuals– to hire a consultant to work with our groups to get clear about what we’re doing, how we’re doing it, ensuring that these groups are on the path toward dismantling white supremacy rather than just “nice” support groups enabling passivity. (For sure, we aren’t people who are passive in our racial justice work!) We white people don’t have a lot ofRead More →

I’ve begun the process of raising money so I can hire consultants of color to evaluate these groups in terms of our format. I want to be sure we are working towards collective liberation, not continuing on in whiteness’ denial. As a white person, I have blinders I don’t know how to remove completely. So, I want to hire a couple Black, Indigenous, or Latinx consultants to take a look at our format and give us some guidance. I’m about to have a conversation with a consultant as I’m seeking guidance about how to seek out those consultants! I’m trying to walk the path whereRead More →

Both groups have met every month since May. Including me in both, one group has four people, one has six. Both sizes work fine. Any larger would likely make it difficult to do this work as time is already a challenge. We are finding that we all want and need a lot more time to process and share about what we are doing and learning. At this point, we are going to keep to the schedule as it is now, all within an hour: silent worship for 2-5 minutes; introductions/brief summaries of most focused part of our antiracism work; breakout groups checking in about theRead More →

We are taking turns as facilitator/clerk of the gatherings (a great relief to me as I am a reluctant “leader”). We are not strictly adhering to the format document (not copy-pasting links or agendas into the chat). It’s a more organic, with a flowing feel in both groups. One of the groups has added a “really really quick statement check in” about what our action focus is after silent worship and before smaller groups, so we can all get ideas from each other. These ideas are shared more deeply in the smaller group sharing. The size of the group seems best at 5-7, though IRead More →

Two groups met in June to discuss group norms and format. One of the two groups has met for our first check-in (on the 2nd Friday), and the second group meets tomorrow (the 4th Friday). Every one of us seems to feel, or has directly expressed, deep gratitude for the space we’re sharing. We are at many different levels of racial identity development and activism. We all have in common a desire to actively dismantle white supremacy — with actions, not only internal work (though that internal work “counts” as part of that process). Personally, I’m so grateful these folks have shown up and supportedRead More →