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A Family Prayer: Shay Youngblood in conversation with Linda Bryant

Event date: 
Tuesday, May 9, 2023 - 7:30pm to 8:30pm

This event takes place in person at Charis and on crowdcast, Charis' virtual event platform. This event is free and registration is required for virtual attendance. Click here to register to attend virtually. Please read the in-person event guidelines at the bottom of this page if you wish to attend in-person. 

Charis welcomes Shay Youngblood in conversation with Linda Bryant for a celebration of A Family Prayer, a beautifully illustrated children's book that celebrates all the family—biological and chosen alike—who keep us safe and teach us to dream. This event is co-sponsored by the Kirkwood United Church of Christ. Kirkwood United Church of Christ is a progressive Christian community gathered in the Kirkwood neighborhood of Atlanta. We are a vibrant congregation that worships together and serves together, that cares about others and seeks to be authentic, and is welcoming of all people. We are actively engaged in our community, living out Jesus’ gospel of justice, mercy, love and grace.

In A Family Prayer, acclaimed novelist Shay Youngblood brings to life the prayer of a little brown girl who finds joy in asking God to keep her family safe. Young readers will celebrate every aunty, cousin, and grandmother in their life. But more than just her biological relatives, each family member is a maternal or paternal archetype, someone in her community who represents the title of mother, father, aunty, and the like.

Shay Youngblood is a writer, educator, and interdisciplinary artist. Author of novels, Black Girl in Paris and Soul Kiss, a collection of short stories and numerous essays, her published plays have been widely produced. Her short stories have been performed at Symphony Space and recorded for NPR’s Selected Shorts. Youngblood received an MFA in Playwriting from Brown University. Her current projects include a novel, an ongoing multi-media performance work on architecture, memory and the environment and a commissioned play inspired by interviews with over 100 Southern Black women. She is a board member of Yaddo Artist Colony and a commissioner on the board of the Japan U.S. Friendship Commission.

Linda Bryant is the co-founder of Charis Books and More, the now almost 49 year old feminist bookstore in Atlanta, and of Charis Circle, the non-profit programming arm of Charis Books. She is has retired from Charis but continues to be dedicated to the work and mission of Charis, encouraging independent voices and working for inclusivity and justice. She enjoys serving as a Spiritual Director companioning people seeking to deepen their spiritual journey. Linda is, as always, an avid reader, and loves encouraging writers. She adores her children and grandchildren and her beloved wife, her spiritual community and her yard filled with flowers.

In-person event guidelines:

  • All attendees must wear a face mask at all times.

  • We will begin seating people at 7 pm ET.

  • This event will be live-streamed via crowdcast. Click here to register to attend virtually.

  • As a reminder: If you are not feeling well, please do not come to the event.

  • If you have any questions regarding these guidelines or to request specific accessibility accommodations, please contact or call the store at 404-524-0304

If you would like to watch the virtual event with computer-generated captions, please watch in Google Chrome and enable captions. If you have other accessibility needs or if you are someone who has skills in making digital events more accessible please don't hesitate to reach out to We are actively learning the best practices for this technology and we welcome your feedback as we continue to connect across distances.

By attending our event you agree to our Code of Conduct: Our event seeks to provide a harassment-free experience for everyone, regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, age, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, ethnicity, religion (or lack thereof), class, or technology choices. We do not tolerate harassment in any form. Sexual language and imagery are not appropriate. Anyone violating these rules will be expelled from this event and all future events at the discretion of the organizers. Please report all harassment to immediately.

Event address: 
A Charis Hybrid (in-person + virtual) Event
184 S. Candler Street
Decatur, GA 30030
A Family Prayer By Shay Youngblood, Kristina Swarner (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Shay Youngblood, Kristina Swarner (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780593234693
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Convergent Books - May 9th, 2023

A Family Prayer is a beautifully illustrated children’s book that celebrates all the family—biological and chosen alike—who keep us safe and teach us to dream

Mama's Home By Shay Youngblood, Lo Harris (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Shay Youngblood, Lo Harris (Illustrator)
Email or call for price.
ISBN: 9780593180228
Published: Make Me a World - October 18th, 2022

A gorgeously illustrated picture book that is a powerful love letter to chosen families and the village that raises us. A young girl basks in the love of her community--which includes not only her mother but the many different women who make up her world.

Event Summary: 
A beautifully illustrated children's book that celebrates all the family—biological and chosen alike—who keep us safe and teach us to dream.