Advent video series

This Advent season, Reconciling Ministries Network is reflecting on what it means to trust that there is indeed, Justice in the Womb. With Mary, we ask what we can do, now, to actively prepare for the birth of Love and Justice into this world full of pain, discord, systemic oppression, and broken relationships.

Stay tuned each week through Christmas to hear from a different United Methodist in our Justice in the Womb video series as they address this holy season of anticipation.


Rev. Dr. Pamela R. Lightsey is an ordained elder of the Northern Illinois Conference of The United Methodist Church serving as Associate Dean for Community Life and Lifelong Learning at Boston University School of Theology. In addition to this work, Dr. Lightsey serves as co-chair of the Womanist Approaches to Religion and Society Group of the American Academy of Religion. An Army veteran and mother whose son served in Iraq, Dr. Lightsey is active in social justice ministries but particularly those focusing on global peace, LGBTQ civil rights, eradicating racism and the engagement of viable reconciliation methodologies.


Rev. Jarell Wilson is a graduate of  Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, a Twitter addict, a blogger, and a self-proclaimed Methodork. He attended Baylor University and graduated from the University of North Texas with a degree in Sociology. He’s an Austinite but not quite a true Texan; an activist in Chacos; a proud Slytherin; a Matt Smith Whovian; a scented candle aficionado; and obsessed parent of the most wonderful dog in all of God’s creation. He is currently a certified candidate for ordained ministry in the Northern Illinois Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church on the elder track.


Brett Ray is a creative and emerging voice within the trans community. He holds a Master’s of Theological Studies from Duke University Divinity School in Durham, NC. Upon release last September, his book, My Name is Brett: Truths from a Trans Christian, was quickly Amazon’s #1 new release in transgender people biographies. Since then, Brett has traveled the country to share his story at various speaking events and seminars. When not writing or speaking, Brett has been known to take off on road-trips with his partner Pam for the sake of good coffee, poetry slams, Ani Difranco concerts, and Iowa State athletics.


Rev. Anna Blaedel is a campus minister, phd student in theology, and queer UM discontent, whose spiritual practices include the sacrament of brunch, sharing silence with strangers and beloveds, waking up before dawn, walking in the woods, and riding the subway.


Matt Berryman serves Reconciling Ministries Network as executive director. Prior to joining the staff of RMN, Matt spent three years in law school at the Florida Coastal School during which time he worked for churches, law firms, and LexisNexis as a legal editor. From 2002-2009, Matt served United Methodist congregations in the Jacksonville area of the Florida Conference.

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