The Everyday Advocate: Living Out Your Calling to Social Justice
As Christians, we are called and anointed to bring good news to the poor, release to the captives, and freedom to the oppressed. In The Everyday Advocate, Ross Murray helps Christians explore our individual callings to justice and start taking practical steps to live that out.
The Everyday Advocate is for the layperson who feels overwhelmed by the world's troubles and helpless to address them. It is for the person who goes to church, hears the gospel, seeks to apply it to their lives, and yearns to be connected to, or create, a community that amplifies their voice and actions. It is also for pastors and faith leaders who want to help people think through their calling to advocacy and help connect them with the communities that can use their gifts and talents.
Murray builds on two questions: Where is God? And what are we called to do? Viewing every action and phenomenon as theological, he stakes out values and shows readers how to work toward those values. He also distinguishes between direct service and cultural change, discussing the balance between them and acknowledging both are needed.
Drawing on his own experience and exercising his pastoral spirit, Murray encourages readers to discern their own call to advocacy, learn to identify injustices that still reign, and respond faithfully by incorporating big and small actions into their everyday lives.
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About the Author
Ross Murray is the founding director of The Naming Project, a faith-based youth ministry and summer camp for LGBTQ youth and their allies. He has worked with youth and families in a variety of settings and presented LGBTQ youth ministry around the world.
In his day job, Ross is vice president at the GLAAD Media Institute, providing activist, spokesperson, and media-engagement training and education for LGBTQ community members, corporations, and advocacy organizations desiring to accelerate acceptance for the LGBTQ community. Ross has secured national media interest in stories that bring examples of LGBTQ equality across diverse communities in America, with a specialty in the relationship between religion and LGBTQ people.
Ross is an ordained deacon in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, with a specific calling to advocate for LGBTQ people and to bridge LGBTQ and faith communities. He is a producer for the Yass Jesus podcast, a faith and sexuality affirming podcast that believes you don't have to pick between gay and God. In 2014, he was named one of Mashable's "10 LGBT-Rights Activists to Follow on Twitter."
The Everyday Advocate is illuminating. It breaks the mold for what we expect Christian advocacy to look like and comes at a critical time for the progressive movement. Murray translates his depth of knowledge into a tactical field guide that anyone can use to level up their advocacy. He expertly weaves together personal experience and others' success stories to light a path forward for novices and career activists alike. --Brian Derrick, political strategist and founder of Oath Advising
Ross Murray epitomizes finding your calling in life and using it. His work for the LGBTQ community has led to change that has saved lives and opened hearts and minds. It is a privilege to work with him every day and see him live his passion. --Sarah Kate Ellis, president and CEO, GLAAD
In a world in which we can often feel powerless, Ross writes an inspiring book about ways we can make a difference. His personal stories and positive writing style make his suggestions and guidance accessible and encouraging. I especially appreciated the honest, genuine faith perspective Ross brings to this work, which will make it especially useful in congregations and communities. In this book, Ross shares meaningful, transformational opportunities to deepen our impact and discipleship. I highly recommend The Everyday Advocate. --Bishop Paul Egensteiner, Metropolitan New York Synod, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
How can someone best advocate for LGBTQ people in their daily life? That's a challenging question for many people. To make it even more challenging, we could ask: How can someone advocate for LGBTQ people in their daily life and draw from their own religious beliefs to do so? For an increasing number of believers, that is not only a challenging question but an essential one. Ross Murray's new book provides a smart, inviting, accessible, hopeful, and faith-filled roadmap for answering both of these questions, reminding us that the liberation of all people is at the heart of the Gospels. --Rev. James Martin, SJ, editor at large, America Media
I'm excited for Ross Murray's book The Everyday Advocate because it may be the catalyst that turns a voter into a lifelong activist who organizes their friends, family, neighborhood, town, county, region, state, or country to reach its fullest potential. The possibilities are endless once one realizes they have power to build and wield. --Sarah Reeske, organizing manager, Invisible-New York State; co-leader, Indivisible, Mohawk Valley, Clinton, NY
Ross Murray has poured a lifetime of faith-inspired justice experience into this handbook for new and seasoned advocates. He offers practical guidance that demystifies advocacy and promotes it as an expression of Christian vocation that includes strategies, insights, and action steps. His personal stories of growth as a Christian and as an advocate invite others to take the first step or to deepen their practice. Ross emphasizes the relational nature of advocacy, encouraging the reader to connect to communities of suffering and join communities of action to inform and drive their public witness. --Rev. Amy Reumann, senior director for Witness in Society, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America