taking the words of Jesus seriously


As some prepare to celebrate the inauguration of Donald Trump and others get ready to protest, I am reminded of the words of Jesus to his disciples: some demons can only come out by “prayer and fasting.”


The moral crisis of political extremism in America is much bigger than Donald Trump and goes much deeper than D.C. For this reason, I am calling people of conscience who are committed to long-term moral resistance to a day of self-purification on January 20th.


In his “Letter from a Birmingham Jail, ” Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. notes that all nonviolent campaigns have four basic steps:

  1. collecting facts to determine if there’s injustice
  2. negotiation
  3. self-purification
  4. direct action


In 2016, Repairers of the Breach traveled to over 22 states and heard from impacted persons across the country about injustices in their lives and the need to enlist in the fight against systemic racism, poverty, child poverty, extremism, denial of healthcare, voter suppression, environmental injustice, xenophobia, unchecked militarism, discriminiation towards LGBTQ people, and our current moment in history.


Over 10, 000 moral leaders, including imams, Catholic sisters, pastors, and rabbis, have signed on to an open letter requesting a meeting with Donald Trump at a House of Worship to discuss a moral public policy agenda for the nation.  Because of the extreme and immoral policies being proposed in the state capitals, by Congress and by the Trump administration, and because the Trump administration has not responded to our request to meet with diverse moral leaders in a House of Worship, our goal is to enter into a period of self-purification as moral activists to prepare for the next steps of moral resistance and nonviolent direct action. 


This is a time of consecration for the nation so that moral activists can fortify themselves for sustained long-term activism.


As we join together for this day of self-purification, we have prepared a schedule as well as multi-media resources to feed our spirits and guide our prayer throughout the day.


Noon to 12:30 pm EST

Cultural Arts: Movement songs playlist

12:30 – 1:00 pm EST

Read three scripture texts (Message Bible) and Specific parts of the Constitution

1:00 pm EST

Read Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II’s “ Standing Down Is Not An Option” Analysis

Read “14-Step Forward Together Moral Monday Movement Components”

2:00 pm EST

Watch Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II’s Watch Night Sermon, “Standing Down Is Not An Option” given at the National Moral Revival Poor People’s Campaign

3:00pm EST

Read “Let America Be America Again” by Langston Hughes

4:00pm EST

Watch both videos, “The Call for a New Poor People’s Campaign” and “Why a Poor People’s Campaign?”

5:00pm EST

Watch Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II’s National Sermon “Revival and Resiliency After Rejection”

6:00pm EST

National Prayer Call for Hope and Focus. The call will pray for the nation, social justice movements, and the upcoming Women’s March.

Telephone number : 319-527-2731    

Access code: 150728


So, let us pray. And let us prepare ourselves for the long work of building beloved community in the nonviolent way of Jesus.


About The Author


The Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II is Pastor of Greenleaf Christian Church and President of Repairers of the Breach. He has served as president of the North Carolina NAACP, the largest state conference in the South, since 2006 and sits on the National NAACP Board of Directors. A former Mel King Fellow at MIT, he is currently Visiting Professor of Public Theology and Activism at Union Theological Seminary and is a Senior Fellow at Auburn Seminary. Rev. Barber is author of the best-selling The Third Reconstruction: How A Moral Movement Is Overcoming the Politics of Division and Fear.

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