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Creating a Safe Space for Dialogue About Racism

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A. Mechelle Haywood, Psy.D., offers skills for engaging in conversations about racism and other issues of difference.

Product Description

Overview

Many of us find it challenging to talk about uncomfortable topics, especially when there is potential for offending someone or creating interpersonal conflict. This is especially true with conversations about race and racism. So how do we learn to broach difficult topics and also foster an environment for authentic dialogue in a ministry setting? In the current climate where race, culture and racial dynamics are at the forefront of our society, A. Mechelle Haywood, Psy.D., offers skills for engaging in conversations about racism and other issues of difference.

This presentation is part two of the Grace & Bias: Forming Catholic Leaders Around Issues of Race series. Part one, Implicit Bias: Tools for Self-Development, and part three, Theological Reflection on Racism, are also available on-demand.

Learning Outcomes

Participants will:

  1. Increase awareness of their personal comfort level with and fears about discussing racism and other difficult topics;
  2. Learn to apply principles of a transactional communication model in informal conversations; and
  3. Identify practical strategies for facilitating authentic, productive dialogue in a ministry setting.

Reflection Questions

Questions for reflection and discussion prior to the learning session are provided below.

  1. When was the last time I had a difficult conversation? Did I embrace or avoid the situation?
  2. What feelings and emotions arise when I have to discuss uncomfortable or difficult topics? How does this differ with more comfortable topics?
  3. What are my assumptions about how other people will respond to a difficult conversation?

Who Should Participate

Priests, deacons, men and women religious, lay ministers, and those involved in vocations, formation, or clergy and ministry personnel needs.