This Martin Luther King, Jr. day, the Community of Living Traditions at Stony Point Center will be spending time in the Art Space screenprinting 150 pillowcases with the hashtag #GiveRefugeesRest. The ‘Give Refugees Rest’ hashtag is the rallying call of a campaign by the Fellowship of Reconciliation (FOR-USA) to end Islamophobia and welcome refugees (more info on how to participate at www.giverefugeesrest.com). The hashtagged pillowcases will be mailed or hand-delivered to state officials who have voiced opposition to the resettlement of Syrian refugees.
As the Community of Living Traditions delves deeper into a screenprinting cottage industry, I’ve been recalling and researching the creative imagery of movements for justice and peace. With graphics, paintings, bold phrases and puppets, art sparks our imagination and ability to enact the better way. And here’s the thing about a lot of the art that accompanies movements for justice and peace: It’s easily reproducible! It proliferates! It walks around! Whether through stencil or printing press or photocopies, this art finds its way into the hands of the many.
What imagery of transformation and hope would you like to send into the world? Can you picture it? Is it Beautiful? Dangerous? Captivating? (Let me know if you want to put it on a t-shirt!)
On Martin Luther King, Jr. day, may our eyes be opened again and again to the images and visions that call us to justice in this world.
Sarah Henkel is a Teaching Elder. She is a resident at Stony Point Center and member of the Community of Living Traditions, a multifaith community dedicated to the practice and study of hospitality, nonviolence and justice.