• "...to bring good news to the poor... proclaim release to the captives... let the oppressed go free..."
  • (Luke 4:18-19)

    Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: Lessons from the Story of Ruth

    Join us Thursday, February 16, 2023, at  8:30-9:30 PM EST for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: Lessons from the Story of Ruth Webinar
    The Biblical story of Ruth offers a beautiful illustration of how God’s love across humanity is made manifest as we choose to embrace one another beyond the boundaries of our differences. There are several diverse groups represented in the book of Ruth:
    • Women
    • Foreigners
    • Widows
    • Older people
    • Poor people
    • Wealthy people
    • The religious community
    Ruth’s story challenges us to consider how specific groups of people continue to be marginalized. Her story also shows God’s intervention through compassionate people and the lessons we can learn from the decisions that were made by all involved.

    Webinar Highlights:
    • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: What do they mean?
    • Racism vs. Prejudice: How can we tell the difference?
    • What is the relationship between racial justice and racism in America?
    • Women have always found ways to support and encourage one another. How do we see this today?
    • Specific groups of people continue to be marginalized: women, children, foreigners, people of color, the poor, the elderly, people based on their religious beliefs, those deemed as “others-otherisms.” Where do we see this happening in our society? How can we make a difference?
    • God’s love is manifested as we choose to embrace one another beyond the boundaries of our differences. In what ways can we personally push beyond those boundaries?
    • We must take time to examine our own prejudices, fears, and beliefs about others. It is important that we intentionally ask the Lord to help us address these internal issues.

    Speaker: Rev. Dr. Christine Smith
    Rev. Dr. Christine A. Smith was called to serve as senior pastor of Covenant Baptist Church, Wickliffe, Ohio, in 2006. In 2014 the church relocated to Euclid, Ohio. Subsequently, in 2019, the church changed its name to “Restoration Ministries of Greater Cleveland, Inc.” She is the founder of “Women Together in Ministry of Greater Cleveland,” and author of a weekly blog, “Shepastor,” dedicated to equipping and encouraging female clergy. Her first book, Beyond the Stained Glass Ceiling: Equipping and Encouraging Female Pastors was published by Judson Press in 2013. In addition to her service as pastor of a local congregation, Rev. Smith is engaged in community service and outreach through work with local clergy groups, hospitals and educational institutions. In 2017, Rev. Smith led her congregation, in collaboration with St. John of the Cross Parish (Euclid) and the Cleveland Clinic to launch the series, “Healthy Temples: Supporting Healthy Minds, Bodies and Spirits.” The series of workshops, free and open to the public, covered topics such as depression in youth and adults, healthy eating, the Daniel plan, physical fitness, managing stress and blood pressure screenings.
         Rev. Smith has authored articles and chapters in a variety of books, covering topics on pastoral care, inter-culturalism and diversity. Since 2012, Rev. Smith has served as adjunct faculty for Ashland Theological Seminary. Her work there includes being a small group leader in the Master of Divinity Cohort and as a Mentor in Ashland’s Thriving Church Ministries certificate program. She has also served as a keynote speaker and presenter for the seminary. In May, 2021, she gave a special presentation for Ashland entitled, “Overcoming Barriers for Women Clergy.” Rev. Smith served as “Executive Leader/Acting Administrator” of the Cleveland Baptist Association (American Baptist Churches, USA) for over two years (2011-2013), laying the groundwork for the Association to call its first female executive minister. Since 1993, Rev. Smith has been engaged locally with American Baptist Women’s Ministries of Greater Cleveland. She has served as workshop leader, keynote speaker, Bible study leader and host for AB Women annual days and retreats. Most recently, Rev. Smith served on the ABWM national nominating committee (2018) and as the Ohio facilitator for the AB Girls STEAM program, “Building Bridges and Gateways to Girls Future,” (2019).
         Locally and nationally, Rev. Smith has been invited to address the interlocking injustices of sexism, racism and classism. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Education Degree from the University of Akron and a Master of Divinity Degree from the Interdenominational Theological Center, Morehouse School of Religion, specializing in Systematic Theology and Women's Studies. Additionally, Rev. Smith completed a one-year Clinical Pastoral Residency Program from St. Vincent Charity Hospital, Cleveland, Ohio, earning four CPE Units. Currently, Rev. Smith is a PhD candidate at Capella University. Her area of study is Human Services: Non-Profit Management and Leadership. She was ordained to the Gospel Ministry in 1995 (Olivet Institutional Baptist Church, Dr. Otis Moss, Jr., ordaining pastor). Rev. Smith and her husband, Aristide Smith, Jr., have three children, Aristide III, Caleb and Aris. For all of these blessings, Rev. Smith simply says, “To God be the glory for the great things He has done!”

    Watch the Webinar on Demand Now!
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