Peace church addresses systemic police brutality with free abolition curriculum

ELKHART, Ind., April 28, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Mennonite Church USA (MC USA), the largest Mennonite denomination and a historic peace church, has developed "Defund the Police?", a free online abolition curriculum that challenges participants to think creatively about personal and community safety in a biblical context. The curriculum is available on the denomination's website, no registration required.

The nine-week, self-guided course was developed to provide a Bible-based response to the continued brutalization of Black, brown and Indigenous people by police, according to Glen Guyton, MC USA's first African American executive director.

"As our police forces adopt the tools and tactics of our military, we as peacemakers need to think deeply about the intersection of our faith and our view of community policing," he said.

The authors of the curriculum – a diverse team of Anabaptist Mennonite writers and abolition experts – will provide an overview of the course during an online panel discussion on April 29 at 7 p.m. EDT. Register for the Zoom webinar here or view on Facebook Live.

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The curriculum utilizes audio and video storytelling, hands-on activities and discussion prompts to explore topics, such as:
  • Individual and community safety
  • The purpose and history of policing
  • Transformative justice
  • The integration of policing in daily life
  • Ideas for moving from education to connection and action

"Police abolition is a process that requires communities to create alternatives to policing," said Guyton, noting that this aspect of "defunding the police" is often misunderstood.

"Defund the Police?" is one of several peacemaking initiatives:
Mennonite Church USA is an Anabaptist Christian denomination with 530 congregations and 62,000 members.

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Editorial Contact: Wil LaVeist, chief communications officer, [email protected], 574-523-3077

SOURCE Mennonite Church USA

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