Five Pillars of Social Justice at First Church By Bruce Wiggins, Social Justice Council Chair

We at First Church are doing pretty well with our social justice programs being spread among what many people see as five important elements of social justice. These five elements can be defined as follows. The percentages are the breakdown of our activities and events for the 2015-16 church year, for the 1,098 persons who were participants and/or attendees. Note: Some activities fall in multiple elements. I attempted to list them in their primary category. So these percentages are approximations.

  • 20% Service: direct help or assistance to people; attending to the present, pressing needs of people and natural systems. Service is personal and involved a direct relationship with others.
  • 16% Advocacy: supporting and /or promoting a cause or course of action that promotes justice. It often involves verbal or written pleading of a case or cause.
  • 7% Witness: being present at an occurrence for a cause; to see, hear, or know through personal experience an event on behalf of a particular individual or group, or to advance justice.
  • 39% Education: instruction, training, study or learning about a particular subject.
  • 18% Organizing: efforts to get people and groups to work together to advance a cause or purpose.

Total: 1,098 persons (participants and/or attendees during 2015-16 church year.)