In the wake of recent tragedies in Baton Rouge, St. Paul, Dallas, and Austin that have rekindled the national conversation on race and policing, Life Anew seeks to be a source of both healing and immediate action steps through Restorative Justice Circles. Restorative Justice is a process that focuses on the healing of stakeholders through reconciliation with the community. Life Anew is working in partnership with the community, local pastors, schools, government agencies, and police officers to provide intentional conservations and reconcile deep divisions.
Sherwynn Patton, Program Director for Life Anew, says “The differences between restorative justice and punitive justice is that restorative justice creates a community space for lasting life change through listening and healing, and punitive justice focuses on what we are going to do to one individual.”
Jon Koch, a member of Austin Stone Community Church says, that “police officers, community members, and pastors are all coming together to say that we want Austin, Texas to be on the forefront of the national narrative about healing in our country.”
Those sentiments were echoed by Assistant Chief Troy Gay with Austin Police Department, “This will help fulfill the Great Commandment which is to love God and to love our neighbors. I think that if we do that with restorative circles it will help individuals be intentional about making our city a better place.”
Below are pictures from the training and information session at Austin Christian Fellowship on July 26, 2016.