Have you noticed? We do not contact you at the end of the year asking you to help match a $50,000 donation before December 31. But we do come to you with GRATITUDE FOR ALL YOU’VE GIVEN TO THE MINISTRIES OF ONEEARTH JUBILEE! Add to that our thanks for sharing the desire to live using no more than what God’s good creation offers.
When the Jubilee Circles meet together in January, we ask, “What was the final bank balance of 2022?” Then we decide on a financial picture for 2023 that we propose to the Board. Current prospects suggest that no increases to ministries can happen in 2023, but your year-end donations could change that. The needs addressed by the ministries in Mexico, of course, exceed the JEM redistributions sent every month. Please keep this in mind as we ask you to contribute one more time before Happy New Year 2023. Every dollar you can give will be received as precious. It will be met with prayers of gratitude. Thank you for the wealth of your hearts and for sharing from your finances as you are moved to do.
A review of the work of the Jubilee Circles in 2022 shows we have continued steadfast and creatively. The ministries tend creation, stand with Indigenous peoples, and serve lower income peoples. Also, women being dispossessed of personhood benefit from JEM along with children and small congregations. Always we hold to the conviction that every person and every being of our planet is marked with God’s love.
The following activities are among the highlights of the year.
1. New Tapachula Ministry—We extended Jubilee ministry to Tapachula, Chiapas, MX, where long-time Jubilee participant Edman Orel Lopez and family moved. He opened ministry with congregations that had been wanting trained leadership, supported pastors in resistance to oppressive rules of the Mexico Presbyterian Church, and helped immigrants crossing the border from Guatemala into Mexico.
2. Rural and Village Church Leader Training— Many rural and village churches lack trained leaders. Going to a campus for a year is out of the question. Trainees need to continue to serve in their communities and help their families. The Yobel School, led by Pedro Robledo, continues to offer short-term classes. Yobel collaborates with other area institutions in Chiapas and Central America to offer excellent teaching in Bible, theology, community organizing, and ecological stewardship.
3. Nutritional Breakfast for Children— Saturdays at the Dan Swanson Centro Cultural in San Mateo begin with a healthy breakfast for children. This was made possible through a grant and donation last year that brought the kitchen appliances up to commercial capacity. In addition to serving healthy food, the breakfast includes encouraging the children to do well in school, avoid gangs, and make daily positive contributions. The teaching connects with a biblical passage.
4. Training Professional Bakers—The upgraded kitchen is also a classroom for training bakers. This training opens possibilities of employment and income in an area where both are an urgent struggle. Will a business coop result in 2023? Stay tuned.
5. Alternatives to Commercial Home, Health, and Food Products—Workshops led by both the San Cristobal and San Mateo Jubilee Circles help people make products. Buying them commercially is beyond household incomes for many. Workshops are on making soaps, lotions, cleaning supplies, and plant medicines. Also on organic gardening, water conservation, fruit tree planting, and crafts.
6. Forums on Jubilee and Earth’s Crises—Our planet’s crises are crescendoing so fast that we stumble over, not only actions that are meaningful, but even the words to describe the crises most accurately. Language and actions we used in the past fail to embrace the full powers of nature’s reaction to human abuse. We are losing control, though many refuse to admit it. Industrialization refuses to let up on the accelerator. So the Forums combine the language of science and faith to shape how to live amid so much collapse. At the moment, you need a household income of at least $100K to participate in the systems as they are, but you can register for 2023 Forums simply by emailing us. The Forums are free.
Into 2023, Jubilee Circles will continue to work on economics for Earth and the common good. Whatever you call it—Solidarity Economy, People’s Economics, OneEarth economics—the purpose is to create economic ways that stay within Earth’s capacities and work for all people and species that are left out.
Your support in 2023 will also assure two more specific events focused on such economic thinking and living.
1. Mexico Trip—If you can go with us on the trip to Mexico, April 14-23, you will see the difference this kind of economics makes in people’s lives.
2. One-day event— We’ll raise up examples of businesses and personal practices that are for the common good. People are doing it!
When Matthew wrote his Gospel, he was intent on showing that the birth and life of Jesus generated a New Creation in the midst of Rome’s militarized superpower that persecuted dissent and left many in poverty. Jesus grew to live a life in which he advocated for an economy of inclusion for all.
OneEarth Jubilee ministries emphasize that the New Creation is not past. It is ongoing. We invite you to support this continuing New Creation with how you live and how you give. Thank you so much.
In partnership with you, we sign for everyone in the Jubilee Circles,