Central Library News Release -- Civic Saturdays Start June 8, 2019

Central Library of Rochester and Monroe County

News Release 

(Thursday, June 6, 2019) – In an attempt to create a shared sense of moral and civic purpose in communities across the country, Citizen University, a national platform for fostering responsible and empowered citizenship, has launched the Civic Saturday program. Civic Saturdays are a gathering of friends and strangers to nurture civic spirit; a place for people to come together face-to-face and reflect and connect. Rochester is now one of more than 20 cities with Civic Saturday programs, organized by community members who have been trained by Citizen University. The first session will take place on June 8 at the Central Library of Rochester & Monroe County in the Kate Gleason Auditorium, located at 115 South Avenue.

The Central Library will host at least two Civic Saturdays this year, along with its partner organization, the M.K. Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence. The events will include poetry readings, songs, and the chance to hear and discuss provocative American texts and listen to a “civic sermon.” Civic Saturday is free and open to the public.

“Civic Saturday has struck a chord, and we are now taking it national with events around the country and with a new Civic Seminary that trains people to lead these gatherings and build these civic congregations in their own towns,” said Eric Liu, Citizen University founder. “In a time when politics is so fiercely polarized, we want to appreciate anew the simple miracle of democratic citizenship.”

Civic Saturdays are an analogue to a faith gathering, and are not meant to replace faith traditions. Instead, the events serve as a time for the public to nurture a spirit of shared purpose, to wrestle with moral questions and to develop a sense of civic character.

About the M.K. Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence: The M.K. Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence is a nonprofit that equips people to use nonviolence to create a sustainable and just world for all. The Gandhi Institute collaborates with local organizations, academic institutions, students, and committed peacemakers in the following areas: nonviolence education, sustainability and environmental conservation, and the promotion of racial justice. The Institute prioritizes programming for people between the ages of 12 and 24, as well as those who serve those age groups. For more information, visit www.gandhiinstitute.org.

About Citizen University: Citizen University is building a culture of powerful, responsible citizenship across the country. Citizen University believes in the promise of a nation where more people are more literate in civic power – and more steeped in a sense of civic character. They are a recognized leader and innovator in the field of civic engagement, working at the intersection of the public, private and independent sectors, to democratize the practice of civic power. For more information, visit www.citizenuniversity.us.

Accessibility: The Central Library is accessible to people with disabilities. To request specific accommodations, call 585-428-8304 ten days prior to the program.

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News Media: For more information, contact Jennifer Byrnes at Jennifer.byrnes@libraryweb.org or (585) 428-8102.