On Faith: Fair-trade store to showcase clothing from Ghana

06/10/2014 12:00 AM

02/15/2015 11:26 AM

One World Market, a fair-trade store at 811 Ninth St., has announced a significant addition to its product lines.

Although not a church-sponsored endeavor, the market began as a justice issue with a group at Watts Street Baptist Church 21 years ago and the first items were sold in the church fellowship hall.

The store is throwing a party from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday to introduce a new hand-sewn clothing line by Global Mamas in Ghana, which employs 600 women in seven communities.

During the launch party, customers will get a first look at the unique clothing made by grandmothers, mothers, sisters, each Mama working hard to support her family and community.

Also, shoppers will get 25 percent off the entire line during the Friday event and will be able to learn more about how sales of this colorful clothing will affect the women’s lives.

Store director April Ravelli said the women not only earn a fair wage, but have access to a school that Global Mamas built for their children. They also will get mentoring from successful businesswomen and after two years have access to interest-free loans to start their own business.

The clothing is made from batik, a traditional fabric, and will feature modern styles women might wear to church or just around town, she said.

The line features a wrap dress that is easy to wear and compliments every body type. It comes in blues and purple and in a black and white polka dot.

The line also offers skirts and baby clothing, including baby shoes. The price range for dresses is $48 to $56. Skirts are $44, baby shoes $16 and baby beds $8.

For the most part, the 600 women work at home where they can also take care of children.

Marriage challenge

A national Baptist group and a Jewish organization have joined the United Church of Christ, along with some individual ministers and church members, in challenging the constitutionality of North Carolina’s marriage laws.

The Alliance of Baptists is a 123-member church network that split from the Southern Baptist Convention in 1987, and the Central Conference of American Rabbis is the oldest and largest rabbinic organization in the country.

The lawsuit, filed in the Western District of North Carolina on April 28, is the first faith-based challenge to same-sex marriage bans in the country.

Alliance President Michael Castle, who appeared Thursday at a press conference at Durham’s Watts Street Baptist, said “We are living deeply into our Christian values and offering a clear, Baptist voice for justice and religious liberty.”

North Carolina law gives authority to ministers to conduct marriage ceremonies but makes it illegal for them to marry couples without a valid marriage license. Same-sex couples cannot obtain a marriage license because of this statute and because of Amendment One, approved by votes in 2012, that defines marriage solely as between a man and a woman.

New housing director

Eric Breit has been named interim executive director of Housing for New Hope, filling the vacancy created after Terry Allebaugh resigned the position at the end of May.

Breit began his new work this week.

“I hit the ground running, working closely with the board and staff. I am focused on both the present and the future of HNH. I am honored to serve as interim this summer.”

Breit earned his master's degree in city and regional planning at UNC-Chapel Hill in May.

Before he went back to school, he served as the development director for Housing for New Hope for five years. And before that he worked for seven years at the nonprofit Finance Fund, a national community development financial institution based in New York City.

A transition team was formed in January to oversee the process of Allebaugh’s departure, celebrate his leadership and conduct a search for his successor. The search for a permanent director will end Sunday, or until the position is filled.

“The new executive director will continue to keep the organization on the leading edge of service delivery and community collaboration to end homelessness,” said Katie Crowe, board member and senior pastor at Trinity Avenue Presbyterian Church, who chairs the team.

Celebrating its 22nd year, Housing for New Hope works to prevent and end homelessness in the Triangle. It has developed a highly collaborative model that provides increased access to housing, healthcare and integrated services to more than 1,000 households a year. Since 1992, it has built more than 70 housing units.

Women’s Connection

The Durham Christian Women’s Connection will hold its monthly luncheon at 9:45 a.m. June 21 in the Commons Dining Room at Croasdaile Village, 2600 Croasdaile Farm Parkway.

Marge Monahan will speak on “From Broken to Overflowing Heart.” She will recount how a perfectionist changed through the trials in her life.

A special feature will be a consignment store fashion show.

The cost is $10 and includes a hot buffet lunch.

Vacation Bible School

Christus Victor Lutheran Church, 1615 N.C. 54, will hold Vacation Bible School, 6:30 through 8:30 p.m., from Sunday through Thursday, June 19.

Classes for children from 4 years old through rising eighth grade will address how to live in God’s Kingdom on Earth using the Kingdom Chronicles curriculum

Register by calling David Seibert at 919-656-0619 or email dseibert@acm.org.

Revival services

North East Baptist Church, 3204 N.C. 55, marked its annual homecoming last Sunday and is holding revival services at 7 p.m. each day this week.

The Rev. Dr. Benjamin Hinton, pastor of Tabernacle Baptist in Gastonia, is the preacher Wednesday and Thursday night. The Rev. Ryan Brooks, pastor of Vertical Church in Burlington, will preach Friday night.

Contact Flo Johnston at flo.johnston314@gmail.com or call 910-361-4135.

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