Finding Comfort In Discomfort: A Cross-Racial Dialogue On Race and Racism – A Symposium

Finding Comfort In Discomfort: A Cross-Racial Dialogue On Race and Racism – A Symposium

November 17 @ 10:00 am – 4:15 pm

Not since the 1960s have racial tensions in the United States been so obvious for so many.  Some deny this.  Others exploit it.  Many are bewildered by it.  In the midst of such tension, honest conversations about race and racism become difficult and discomforting.  Unfortunately many avoid them.  Conversations across racial divides are one way to help us understand and address why a country claiming commitment to human equality and dignity continues to struggle with racism.

On November 17, 2018, St. Matthew’s, Westerville, and Otterbein University invite people of all races to a day of conversation beginning at 10 a.m.  Jim Mulholland, author of the blog – Note To My White Self, will speak about his journey from racist indifference to racist awareness after his adoption of a black daughter.  His talk will be followed by a frank discussion with Cherie Bridges Patrick, social/racial justice coach, facilitator, and member of St. Matthew’s, on the challenges to racial healing.  The audience will be invited to actively participate in the conversation and explore ways to move us beyond conversations.

 Attendees will then have their choice of two awareness-expanding workshops.  Jim Mulholland will lead a workshop (limited to 50 participants) on the Reasonableness of Reparations designed to help white people understand the cost of slavery and racial discrimination. Concurrently, local Westerville Pastor, Vaughn Bell, and Dr. Margaret Koehler, Professor of English at Otterbein University will co-facilitate a workshop entitled, “Who Do We Want in Our Community: Implicit and Explicit Bias in Westerville.” The day’s event will close with a discussion of both personal and corporate next steps.

Students are welcome to attend at no cost. For non-students, the suggested donation is $25 for each session (morning and an afternoon workshop) or $40 for both morning and afternoon sessions. Additional donations to the MLK Legacy Project are also welcomed. Registration is available at

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