A Riff of Love: Notes on Community and Belonging
By Greg Jarrell
"Surprising teachers. Tragic losses. Unexpected gifts. Every neighborhood has stories, and ways of singing the stories of their place. Start digging in, and you find all sorts of music. In a neighborhood skilled in improvisation, like Enderly Park, you also discover new ways to sing those songs, and a choir of new kinfolk to sing them with.
Since 2005, author and saxophonist Greg Jarrell has been learning the songs of Enderly Park, his Charlotte neighborhood. A Riff of Love explores the riffs and melodies that comprise the life of the neighborhood and of QC Family Tree, the hospitality house where he lives. Though neighbors there face significant economic and political barriers, they still thrive. Funny, heartbreaking, and challenging in equal measure, these stories and essays about life in Enderly Park will surely inspire new improvisations towards community and neighbor-love for everyone who reads them."
The Sun is Up: One Minister's Awakening to Racial Reconciliation
by Martha Dixon Kearse
"First as a teacher, then as clergy, Martha Dixon Kearse, a white female minister, struggles to understand the real lessons of racial justice in America—particularly for those people of faith who claim to love everyone—and what work is required of those same white people of faith to make things right. Through the theology of hospitality, Kearse describes how she came to understand her privilege as a white person, the racism built into many institutions—even sometimes in the church—and ways she can speak out against racism without speaking over marginalized voices.
Delay it, do it halfway, ignore it—however we avoid it, the truth is that progress is stymied until the people of the church confront real issues in hard, sincere, painful, revealing, and honest conversations with other Christians, both black and white. Only then can any action occur; only then can the process of true reconciliation move forward."