The winter season covers a period of the highest celebration in the religious culture and civic life of the United States. It is a period of time when the poor and homeless experience the most deadly conditions and the highest rates of suicide. It is also the season when capitalist commercialism and cultural ritualism combine with an intense public pretense of charity toward the poor and homeless.
The Winter Offensive is an eight week organizing drive (from Thanksgiving through MLK day) that confronts these conditions with a sustained message against the false narratives and stereotypes about the causes of poverty and homelessness. In the past, the Homeless Union’s Winter Offensives have included a series of synchronized actions and protests. These actions serve as schools for the identification, education, and training of leaders from the ranks of the poor and homeless through their struggles for survival and mass organizing, and to “Put the Christ Back in Christmas!”
Over the next eight weeks The Freedom Church of the Poor, in collaboration with the Homeless Union and other organizations of the poor, will challenge the false Biblical and religious narratives, expose the suffering and hypocrisy unleashed by our economic and political system, lift up the insights and fights of the poor and dispossessed who are on the front lines of these struggles, and work to identify and develop leaders for the long haul movement to end poverty.
We invite all to join the Freedom Church of the Poor online every Sunday from November 27th to Jan 15th for this season of sustained activity and study.
Click icons below to join us on Facebook and Youtube, or to join the Zoom room for services email us at email@example.com
Freedom Church of the Poor Service Schedule
(Find info and links to services here as they become available)
Advent of Revolution
Nov 27, 2022 (6:00pm ET)
Ending Homelessness and Poverty – Launch of the Winter Offensive 2022/23
On November 27th 2022, Freedom Church of the Poor will kick off in conjunction with the National Union of the Homeless in this year’s Winter Offensive. Hosted by Tammy and Matthew Rosing. Joined by many others to discuss what the Winter Offensive is, and how you can take action with us in your own town. We will discuss the false narratives that come from this time of year. Look at the reality of what we face and how to take action so that there are no more deaths in the streets. Everybody has a right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Let’s come together to focus our efforts in this year’s Winter Offensive.
Dec 4, 2022 (6:00pm ET)
Theme: Las Posadas – Combined service with La Iglesia del Pueblo
Dec 11, 2022 (6:00pm ET)
Theme: The Magnificat – The Song of Revolutionary Mothers
Dec 18, 2022 (6:00pm ET)
Theme: The Longest Night – Annual National Homeless Memorial – Mourn the Dead and Fight Like Hell for the Living
Birth of a Movement
Dec 24-25, 2022 – (6:00pm ET)
Theme: Moving Beyond the Charity Model
Jan 1, 2023 – (6:00pm ET)
Theme: Challenging the Religion of Empire and Confronting White Christian Nationalism
Jan 8, 2023 – (6:00pm ET)
Theme: Jesus as a Revolutionary Leader – Overturning the tables of Empire
Jan 15, 2023 – (6:00pm ET)
Theme: Good News to the Poor – What We’ve Built and What We Need to Build
Remembering the 1968 Poor People’s Campaign, and realizing our vision for a multi-racial democracy and a politics of care.
Birth of a Movement Fact Sheet
This year Freedom Church, in collaboration with the Kairos Policy Team, is creating a Birth of a Movement Fact Sheet, one page of which will be released weekly for the duration of the season. This fact sheet exposes the realities of suffering and injustice in our society (policy), shares insight (testimonies) from those organizing and resisting that injustice, and offers Biblical truths and analysis about the Christmas season, which counter the traditional narratives that are paraded out every year to reinforce the system that kills the poor and creates poverty. Taken together this fact sheet clarifies the intimate connection between these religious/biblical myths and the policies and other charity-based “solutions” and underscores the need to organize our communities in a way that can understand and take on both.
By signing up for our mailing list, you will receive each page of the Birth of a Movement Fact Sheet as it is released. We encourage all to print, use and share this resource far and wide.
Cultural Resources for the Season
These visual arts, theomusicology and reading resources are available for you to download and use in your faith communities and/or organizing efforts during the season. The images can be printed out and hung in physical spaces, or shared virtually online, and songs can be played as videos or learned to sing as a group.
For further reading:
University of the Poor article, “The Homeless Union and its Winter Offensives to Organize the Poor and Dispossessed” by Willie Baptist and Savina Martin
The season of Advent is a time for revolutionary hope, a time to reflect on what it means that God has prepared the way to transform the world from the bottom up. This resource is a supplemental study guide for the Advent of a Revolution section of We Cry Justice: Reading the Bible With the Poor People’s Campaign, where we look more closely at some of the dominant themes and stories that shape this season and re-read those stories and themes from the perspective of the poor and dispossessed and out of the active and organized struggle of the poor for a more just world.
To participate, please sign up on this form and we will send you the password to access the Advent of a Revolution Study Series.
Partners for the Winter Offensive with Freedom Church of the Poor