Becoming by Michelle Obama

Michelle Obama wrote Becoming in 2016. We will read part 1, “Becoming Me” for the first session on November 30 at 7, EMAIL ovsecretary [at] gmail [dot] com, RSVP the corresponding Facebook event, OR COMMENT HERE to get on the Zoom mailing list with meeting connection details.

From the forward:

So far in my life, I’ve been a lawyer. I’ve been a vice president at a hospital and the director of a nonprofit that helps young people build meaningful careers. I’ve been a working class black student at a fancy mostly white college. I’ve been the only woman, the only African American, in all sorts of rooms. I’ve been a bride, a stressed-out new mother, a daughter torn up by grief.  And until recently, I was the First Lady of the United States of America — a job that’s not officially a job…

You may be asking, “Why would a Christian book club select a book by a First Lady? A book club in a church affiliated with a denomination that is historically famous for promoting the ‘freedom of religion’ clause in the US constitution? ARE YOU NOT HYPOCRITES??!?”

When we gathered to select the book list for this year, this book was a universal favorite. I’m not completely sure why, but in my case I wanted to read it because Michelle reminds me of the kind of women and men who make churches run smoothly simply by showing up at odd hours, keying themselves into the church, and organizing stuff. The ones who come in early on Sunday morning to make the coffee, and who also know some secrets about getting the dishwasher to actually sanitize the dishes. In some denominations these would be called deacons. In others they might be members of the building committee, or the altar guild. Whatever they are called, they tend to stay in the background and solve problems before anybody even notices that they are there. We believe that this book is ultimately going to be about the personal sacrifice required to nurture a warm and integrated community.