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Community, Civility and Compassion Topics of March Series

Who would have thought a program series about “civility and compassion” would feature slam poetry, a photo exhibit and a soup dinner?

All of those and more free events are planned in March as part of a series, Building Common Ground: Discussions of Community, Civility and Compassion.  

The series, which marks the one-year-anniversary of the Civility Project of Springfield-Greene County, is a partnership of the Library, the Civility Project, Community Foundation of the Ozarks and the Interfaith Alliance of the Ozarks.

The goal is to engage all ages in thinking about and discussing the importance of community, civility, and compassion in their daily lives. By bringing audiences together for programs and events that include reading, viewing, reflection, discussion and civic engagement initiatives, the Library and its partners hope to enhance the quality of life and learning in the community.

• “The Civically Engaged Reader” Book Discussion, 6:30 p.m. Thursdays, March 1, 15 and 29, Brentwood Branch community room, for adults. Drury University English professor Dr. Randall Fuller will lead discussions on “The Civically Engaged Reader: A Diverse Collection of Short Provocative Readings on Civic Activity.” A limited number of books is available for those pre-registered. Call 883-1974.

• Charter for Compassion, 5:30 p.m. Friday, March 2, Park Central Branch, all ages. Members of  MO Poetry Slam Springfield will perform and help create Springfield-Greene County’s own “Poem for Compassion;” the public will see a short film on the Charter for Compassion and be able to sign the international charter. (See charterforcompassion.org.) Winners of the 10 Tenets of Civility Photo Contest will be displayed. 

• Community, Civility & Compassion – An Interfaith Discussion and soup dinner, 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 6, in the Library Center auditorium, ages 18 and older. Enjoy a free soup dinner prepared by the Cook’s Kettle. Members of Interfaith Alliance of the Ozarks will discuss how the cultures and traditions of diverse faiths offer
different approaches to address poverty, hunger, domestic violence and sexual abuse. Seating is limited, required registration begins Feb. 21, call 882-0714.

• “Forgiveness: A Time to Love and a Time to Hate,” Film and Discussion, 5 p.m. Thursday, March 8, at the Moxie, all ages. Watch excerpts of the PBS documentary, which explores a compelling range of stories of personal betrayal to global reconciliation after genocide. The Rev. Mark Struckhoff, Council of Churches of the Ozarks, will lead a discussion about forgiveness. 

Building Common Ground: Discussions of Community, Civility and Compassion, is made possible by support from the American Library Association and the Fetzer Institute. It is a national initiative to enhance the quality of life and learning within the community through a series of library programs. The Library is one of 30 public libraries nationwide receiving grants to host the series. 

For more information contact Community Relations at 616-0564. 


 

Kathleen O’Dell is community relations director for the Springfield-Greene County Library District. She can be reached at kathleeno@thelibrary.org.

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