December 25 – Birthing Dreams

By: Dr. Sharon R. Fennema, Join the Movement Toward Racial Justice Curator, UCC National

“Do not be afraid; for see - I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Promised One, the Redeemer” (from Luke 2:1-20).


“What if abolition isn’t a shattering thing, not a crashing thing, not a wrecking ball event?
What if abolition is something that sprouts out of the wet places in our eyes,
the broken places in our skin,
the waiting places in our palms,
the tremble holding in my mouth when I turn to you?
What if abolition is something that grows?
What if abolishing the prison industrial complex is the fruit of our diligent gardening,
the building and deepening of a movement to respond to the violence of the state
and the violence in our communities
with sustainable, transformative love?”
– Alexis Pauline Gumbs


Into the cages, behind the bars, under the barbed wire,
freedom sings
like a newborn cry
And so we wail: glory

To the shackled feet, the cuffed hands, the frisked bodies,
liberation comes
like a swaddling cloth
And so we whisper: glory

In the watching and the waiting, glory
In the sky-splitting and the trembling, glory
In the truth-telling and the reckoning, glory

In the dismantling and the undoing, glory
In the repairing and the healing, glory
In the believing and the following, glory

In the witnessing and the bending down, glory
In the dreaming and the imagining, glory
In the planting and the building, glory

Through the practice, with the movement, among the every-day choices,
emancipation arrives
like a long-awaited promise
And so we sing: glory

With the visions, in the dreams, toward the future
abolition breathes
like a brown-skinned baby boy
And so we pray: glory.


Artwork: “Birthing Dreams” by Yohana Junker (discover more at:


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