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Steeple Newsletter

First Church Reads: "Arguing About Slavery" and "The Fireproof Moth"

In the decades before the Civil War, a growing abolitionist movement began to have its influence on Congress. Small groups, including church and women’s groups, would petition Congress to end slavery. This was very inconvenient for the vast majority of Congressmen, north and south alike, who simply did not want to discuss the issue. Eventually, the southern dominated House of Representatives passed a “gag rule” prohibiting even the discussion of the topic.

by Drew Tucci on October 14, 2020

"First Church Reads" is a newer feature section of the Steeple where staff members or members of the church may be invited to offer book and formation recommendations that specifically help deepen spiritual life. Please email Jake if you would like to write a resource or book recommendation. This week we have two recommendations from member Drew Tucci.



Fireproof Moth
By Milo Thornberry

Milo Thornberry was a dear friend and my minister at Aldersgate United Methodist Church in Juneau, Alaska when I lived there in the mid 1990s.  Years earlier, when Milo was a young man in rural Texas, he was influenced by, and participated in civil rights activities as he was studying for the ministry. By 1966 his faith had taken in from Texas to Boston to Taiwan, where even greater challenges awaited him.

Taiwan was under the oppressive control of Chiang Kai-shek and the Nationalist party. The secret police and other government forces were active in all of the worst ways. Milo’s faith demanded much more than “thoughts and prayers”, to put it in today’s language. He and his wife took great personal risks in aid of justice. This is a short but powerful book that at times reads like a spy novel, but is a factual account of courage and faith against evil and discrimination.


 
Arguing About Slavery
By William Lee Miller
 
In the decades before the Civil War, a growing abolitionist movement began to have its influence on Congress. Small groups, including church and women’s groups, would petition Congress to end slavery. This was very inconvenient for the vast majority of Congressmen, north and south alike, who simply did not want to discuss the issue. Eventually, the southern dominated House of Representatives passed a “gag rule” prohibiting even the discussion of the topic.

Enter former President John Quincy Adams, now a representative from Massachusetts. Arguing About Slavery is an inspiring account of how Adams overcame insults, official censure, death threats, and the hostility and indifference of others to champion the cause of freedom. 

Drew Tucci, First Church Member

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