Vanessa Riles

Do You Believe?

Vanessa Riles -- November 4, 2018

Scriptures for today:
Psalm 147:1-11, 20 | Isaiah 40:21-31

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Vanessa Riles a Black, queer, sex positive, body positive, activist, and spiritual lay leader is an Oakland native seeking freedom from white supremacy, patriarchy, capitalism, American exceptionalism and oppression of all kinds for herself and everyone marginalized, disenfranchised, criminalized and oppressed by these forces. Over the past several years Vanessa has served as a member of this church in a variety of capacities and has grown spiritually through that service, through her connection to this faith community, and through her growing and developing relationship with God and Jesus Christ. 

Vanessa participates in direct actions, community organizing, and public policy work throughout Oakland to protest the persistent and pervasive war on Black life. She has organized with Second Acts,#Interfaith4BlackLives, black.seed, the East 12th Coalition, Bay Area Restaurant Worker’s Movement, the Stop Urban Shield Coalition, the Citywide Anti-Displacement Network, the Anti Police Terror Project and various other groups fighting for the lives and freedoms of Black, POC, disabled and LGBTQI2S people and communities. Vanessa’s participation in direct action and her commissions of civil disobedience are deeply rooted in her faith. She is searching for meaning and fulfillment in a world that keeps telling her that her voice, her vote, and her very life don’t matter. Vanessa is deeply honored to be given the opportunity to offer herself as a vessel once again.