Organization seeks to reach out across race, denominations

Published 7:00 pm Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Following closely after “In God we trust” as our nation’s motto is the equally often repeated phrase, “united we stand.”

The philosophy behind both maxims also describes Mission Mississippi, an organization founded in Jackson in 1993 with the goal of building a better state by forging relationships with others through Christ, regardless of race or denomination.

On Monday, Mission Mississippi’s president, Neddie Winters, came to Brookhaven in hopes of starting a group here. The local meeting, which was attended by a diverse crowd of about 40 people, appears to have provided a good foundation for getting things going here.

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If all goes as planned, Brookhaven’s chapter will be the 22nd for Mission Mississippi. The group’s outreach into our community comes through the vision of Phyllis Spearman of Brookhaven. “I hope this is the beginning,” she said Monday night. Forming a steering committee will be the next step.

Winters said the organization is “relationship driven.” According to Mission Mississippi’s web site, the group seeks to bring people of all denominations and races together through events such as regular prayer breakfasts, church partnership picnics, youth rallies and retreats, pastor dialogues and retreats and “two and two” restaurant days.

Five decades after the civil rights movement, churches remain one of the few areas of our society that are, to a large degree, still racially segregated. Likewise, our congregations are largely separate from each other with the exception of a few non-denominational events.

Mission Mississippi challenges that notion of separateness and seeks to unite people regardless of race or church affiliation – and to do so on a regular basis. Through these human connections, the idea is that a better community and state will naturally follow.

Surely, Mission Mississippi is a noble endeavor and one that deserves support. If you missed this week’s meeting, call Spearman at 601-833-5198 to see how you can get involved.