ESR staff spent last Thursday with Reverend Willard Bass of Green Street Church. Reverend Bass led a very enlightening workshop on change and diversity. The exercises and information he shared stirred considerable open conversation, and while many people disagreed with one another and with Reverend Bass on a variety of topics, the staff explored those differences of opinion bravely and with open minds.
Everyone learned something new in the process, and Reverend Bass facilitated the discussion skillfully and made sure that the space remained safe for all. The group worked through definitions of a variety of terms that can often be hot-button words, as well as explored the concept of culture and socialization. Topics covered sexual orientation and identity as well as racial, religious, and cultural identification, and shed light on how the various demographics are shifting, bringing new realities that require changes of attitude and understanding.