Archive for November, 2013

Everyone Has a Story


It started with a broken ankle, and a $500 payday loan, and ended in a three-year ordeal that cost Elliott and his family more than $30,000.

When his wife slipped on some ice and broke her ankle, Elliott needed to find a way to pay for the hospital bill. Running short of options, he took out a loan from a payday lender. Two weeks later, with his wife sidelined from work with no disability or insurance, he had to roll the loan over – and the cycle began. One loan turned into two, into three, as each needed to roll over to pay that initial loan – plus $50 fees and interest.

He never missed a payment on the loans. But with all of his income being sucked away through fees and crushing interest rates, something had to give.

That something was his house.

The bank repeatedly refused to work with the Marine Corps veteran, and when payments started slipping below the required minimums, they foreclosed.

All from one broken ankle. And one payday loan.

Everyone has a story. At Communities Creating Opportunity, we’re seeing more than ever just how connected our stories are – how the refusal to expand Medicaid leaves families like Elliot’s out in the cold, at the mercy of predatory lenders and their exorbitant interest rates. How one broken ankle leads to devastation.

These problems are connected, and so are the solutions. Our work on healthcare, on payday loans, on citizenship – everything we do is focused on restoring the dignity of each of God’s children into the center of our laws and our society.

Recently, you may have received a letter asking you to support our mission to bring people of all faiths together to build relationships, develop strong leaders, and improve the quality of life in our communities. Please consider making a gift today.


Thank You Event: Dec. 5


It has been a big year. In action after action, the faith community in the Kansas City metro has stood up to advance the cause of dignity and justice.

It’s time to say a big thank you.

Please join us on Thursday, December 5th, for CCO’s Annual Appreciation Event.
It will include appetizers; a recognition of donors, volunteers, Board of Directors, and partners/allies; and will close with a brief program at 5:30 that reviews our successes from 2013 and a plan of action for 2014.

The event will take place from 4pm-6pm at the CCO offices: 2400 Troost Ave, Suite 4600, Kansas City, MO 64108.

Please RSVP at by December 2nd.

Questions? Contact Amanda Mayhew,, 816-221-9900 x107.

CCO Leaders Hold Weekly Vigil for Immigration Reform

We’re down to the wire.  Our communities want to know – who will act first to protect our families?

Communities Creating Opportunity and our allies across the country continue to urge Congress to do the right thing and pass comprehensive immigration reform in 2013. But if they continue to fail, we are increasing our pressure on the Administration to offer some sort of relief.

It’s already working. Just last week, the Administration halted deportations of military families.

You and I both know: that isn’t enough. Not by a long shot. So in Kansas City, we are standing up to join the nationwide movement in these final weeks of 2013 to continue demanding reform. Congress’s repeated refusal to bring immigration reform up for a vote isn’t just lazy and shortsighted – it is moral cowardice.

As people of faith, we believe in the transformative power of prayer. Come, pray with us for comprehensive reform! Last week, CCO leaders began a vigil in front of the Federal Immigration Court in downtown Kansas City. In peaceful prayer and prophetic community, we stood together for our families, for our friends, for our faith.

Will you join us? We will hold this vigil every Tuesday for the rest of 2013, praying for officials in Washington, DC to step up and bring relief to millions of families in our country.

vigil 11-12

WHAT:     Prayer Vigil for Immigration Reform
songs, prayer, reflection, testimony, signs, candles, and more!
WHEN:       Tuesdays, 4:30-5:30pm (Nov. 19, 26; Dec. 3, 10, 17)
WHERE:    Washington Park, immediately facing 2345 Grand Blvd., Kansas City MO 64108
WHO:           People of faith, families, students, workers, clergy – all are welcome
RSVP:           Sara John,, 816-803-1513

As we enter a season of gratitude, we have so much to be thankful for in our community. I would like to personally thank you for your support of the work of CCO. Sometimes the road to justice seems never-ending, the mountain to liberation too steep to climb. But with your prayers, participation and financial support, we are able to have hope and courage to continue the struggle for dignity and justice in our world. If you would like to make a holiday contribution, please click here. Thank you!

We look forward to seeing you on Tuesday!


Sara L. John
Community Organizer/Organizadora de la comunidad
2400 Troost Ave, Suite 4300
Kansas City, MO 64108
(o) 816.221.9900 x112
(c) 816.803.1513
(f) 816.842.1587


Estimados amigos,

Estamos en la última hora. Nuestras comunidades quieren saber – ¿quién nos protegerá a nuestras familias primero?

Comunidades Creando Oportunidad y nuestros aliados en todo el país seguimos urgiendo al Congreso que haga lo correcto y pase la reforma migratoria comprensiva en 2013. Sin embargo, si el Congreso sigue fallando, seguiremos presionando a la Administración que ofrezca algún tipo de alivio.

Ya está dando resultados. La semana pasada, la Administración paró la deportación de familiares de los militares.

Pero nosotros sabemos: no es suficiente. Para nada. Por eso en Kansas City, nos ponemos de pie y juntos con el movimiento nacional, seguimos exigiendo al Congreso que pase la reforma migratoria en 2013. El rechazo repetitivo del Congreso de votar en la reforma migratoria no es solamente perezoso y corto de vista – es cobardía moral.

Como gente de fe, creemos en el poder transformacional de oración.  Vengan a rezar con nosotros para la reforma migratoria comprensiva! La semana pasada, líderes de CCO comenzaron una vigilia en frente a la Corte federal de inmigración en el centro de Kansas City. Con oración tranquila y como comunidad profética, nos paramos para nuestras familias, nuestros amigos, nuestra fe.

¿Nos acompañará? Estaremos en vigilia todos los martes hasta el fin del año 2013, rezando por los oficiales en Washington, DC, para dar un paso adelante y ofrecer alivio a millones de familias en nuestro país.

vigil 11-12

QUÉ:             Vigilia de oración para la reforma migratoria
                             canción, oración, reflexión, testimonio, letreros, velas y más!
CUÁNDO:      Los martes, 4:30-5:30pm (Nov. 19, 26; Dic. 3, 10, 17)
DÓNDE:         Parque Washington, frente al 2345 Grand Blvd., Kansas City, MO 64108
QUIÉN:          Gente de fe, familias, estudiantes, trabajadores, clero – todos están bienvenidos
SRC:                 Sara John,, 816-803-1513

Ya que la temporada de gratitud ha empezado, tenemos mucho en nuestra comunidad de que hay que dar las gracias. Yo quisiera agradecerle personalmente para su apoyo al trabajo de CCO. A veces, el camino hacia la justicia parece interminable, la montaña a la liberación demasiada inclinada para ascender. Sin embargo, con sus oraciones, participación y ayuda económica, podamos tener la esperanza y valor para seguir en la lucha para la dignidad y justicia en nuestro mundo. Si le gustaría hacer una contribución, favor de hacer clic aquí. Gracias!

Les esperamos el martes en la vigilia!


Sara L. John
Community Organizer/Organizadora de la comunidad
2400 Troost Ave, Suite 4300
Kansas City, MO 64108
(o) 816.221.9900 x112
(c) 816.803.1513
(f) 816.842.1587

November 2013
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