Community Partner Spotlight: Faith for Justice

by | Mar 17, 2023 | Funding

Faith for Justice came to fruition as a result of the Ferguson uprisings following the shooting of Michael Brown in 2014 and the terrorization brought about by the police.  Founded officially with the state of Missouri in 2018, the organization works to bring together local congregations and other faith-rooted organizations to fight for the liberation of Black and oppressed people and working families. They also have partnerships with non-faith-based organizations who appreciate Faith for Justice’s concentrations in emotional and spiritual health. Executive Director, Michelle Higgins, shared that they are a part of the “progressive Christian movement” with the focus of stabilizing the conditions of Black and working-class people regardless of their religious background.She says, “I think the big thing that Faith for Justice wants to let people know is that we are serving because of our faith. And our faith, often it comes off like we only want to serve people who share our faith. But our testimony is that being rooted in our faith is what makes us welcoming, what makes us inclusive.”

Michelle recognizes the importance of self-care and community healing in doing this work. During the uprisings, several organizers burnt out and some took their own lives as the struggle and fight for justice was overwhelmingly hard. She says, “I think, had we established emotional care and more spiritual health care [upon our founding], and not just what we call spiritual warfare, which is legitimizing the fight for Black life through Biblical and sacred texts supporting that fight, some lives could have been saved. We began to use more spiritual and emotional health as an answer to the weapon of hope, and not just what we were using to tear down what we called Christian supremacy at the time.” 

Michelle discussed that Faith for Justice also focuses on maternal and reproductive justice.  Part of this work involves challenging attempts to limit access to reproductive health care and recognizing the fight is not just about the right to abortion. While the conversation can be divisive, she hopes that no one believes that a child should go hungry, or a pregnant mother should lose her life due to the non-viability of a fetus. FLOURISH helped to fund the organization’s “People Powered Health Justice” initiative, which supported about a dozen mothers throughout their pregnancy with their day-to-day needs. This help included taking them to doctor’s appointments, ensuring they had a healthcare provider they liked, buying healthy groceries, and teaching them about policies such as the Child Tax Credit and Missouri’s Pre-K and Kindergarten opportunities.  The grant also allowed Faith for Justice to hire Black doulas to provide care to mothers with wages that dignified their work, as opposed to having them help pro bono. 

Faith for Justice has made a lasting impact on people who simply need the resources to live a better life.  Michelle shared one story of a young, queer Black woman in sex work who sought out help when she had nowhere else to turn.  At risk for institutionalization due to mental health issues which were exacerbated by several pregnancy losses, the organization was able to connect her to a postpartum doula who helped walk her through the grief process and recommended intensive outpatient care through SSM.  Michelle recalls, “in many days when we first met her, when she just wanted to take her life because she was sort of damned for seeking abortion, and then damned for carrying a fetus and failing to deliver, Christian society had really abandoned her. But here Faith for Justice has said not only do we believe you are sacred, but we also believe that God is close to you because of what you’re struggling through.” 

To get involved or contribute, visit In addition, the organization’s call to action is for people to affirm the People’s Plan for St. Louis, several initiatives that help to build power and redistribute resources for the people most in need in the city of St. Louis. You can learn more and sign at 

Learn more about Faith for Justice’s FLOURISH grant-funded project, “People Powered Health Justice.”


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