Awakening to Racial Justice


Statements from Bishop Brown and the Racial Justice and Reconciliation Commission on the Verdict of the Derek Chauvin Trial


We believe in an unchanging God: unchanging in love, unchanging in faithfulness, unchanging in supplying comfort and peace




Responses from Bishop Brown

  • Profound Unrest
  • Video statement from Bishop Brown
    • Injustice
    • Outrage
    • Inhumanity
    • Time of Pandemic





Diocesan Commission at Work


Litany for Social Justice
June 3, 2020
Office of Government Relations
Siblings: God commands us through Jesus Christ to love one another. In baptism, we promise to seek and serve Christ in all persons, loving our neighbors as ourselves and to strive for justice and peace, and respect the dignity of every human being. Let us now honor those vows and pray for our nation in this election season, for wise and just leaders, and for the needs of others throughout our country and the world. We pray for continued blessings on all peacemakers, on leaders who value peace, and on everyone who promotes nonviolent solutions to conflict. We pray for a speedy end to all violence and warfare around the world. God of peace and gentleness, Hear our prayer. We pray for the strength of heart and mind to look beyond ourselves and address the needs of our siblings throughout the world; for the rural and urban poor; for the rebuilding of our communities; and for an end to the cycles of violence that threaten our future. God of generosity and compassion, Hear our prayer. We pray for all nations, that they may live in unity, peace, and concord; and that all people may know justice and enjoy the perfect freedom that only God can give. God of liberty and freedom, Hear our prayer. We pray that the Holy Spirit may embrace the most vulnerable members of our society; we pray also for an end to the growing disparity between the rich and poor; and for the grace and courage to strive for economic justice. God of all gifts and blessings, Hear our prayer. We pray for an end to prejudice throughout our country and the world; that we will respect all people as precious children of God; and that racism, sexism, and all other forms of discrimination will be forever banished from our hearts, our society, and our laws. God of fellowship and equality, Hear our prayer. We pray for a reverence of creation; that we will have the tools and the will to conserve it; that we will use its bountiful resources in the service of others; and that we will become better stewards of all that has been entrusted to us. God of nature and the universe, Hear our prayer. We pray for all immigrants, refugees, and pilgrims from around the world, that they may be welcomed in our midst and be treated with fairness, dignity, and respect. God of outcasts and wanderers, Hear our prayer. We pray for the sick, the aged and the infirm; for those with physical or mental disabilities; that all may have access to proper health care; and that God’s loving embrace may be felt by all who suffer. God of comfort and healing, Hear our prayer. We pray for all prisoners and captives; that a spirit of forgiveness may replace vengeance and retribution; and that we, with all the destitute, lonely, and oppressed, may be restored to the fullness of God’s grace. God of absolution and mercy, Hear our prayer. We pray for all children and families, and particularly for the orphaned, neglected, abused, and those who live in fear of violence or disease; that they may be relieved and protected. God of children and families, Hear our prayer. We pray for the reconciliation of all people, and for the Church throughout the world, that it may be an instrument of your healing love. God of outreach and restoration, Hear our prayer. We pray for all who have died as a result of violence, war, disease or famine, especially those who died because of human blindness, neglect, or hardness of heart. God of eternal life and resurrecting love, Hear our prayer. Almighty God, you have promised to hear what we ask in the name of your Son. Watch over our country now and in the days ahead, guide our leaders and all who will vote, guide them in all knowledge and truth and make your ways known among all people. In the passion of debate give them a quiet spirit; in the complexities of the issues give them courageous hearts. Accept and fulfill our petitions, we pray, not as we ask in our ignorance, nor as we deserve in our sinfulness, but as you know and love us in your Son Jesus Christ our Lord. AMEN.


Resources

Preaching Black Lives (Matter)

  • Preaching Black Lives (Matter) is an anthology that asks, “What does it mean to be church where Black lives matter?

Racial Justice & Reconciliation

  • From the Episcopal News Service.







In the wake of the Black Lives Matter movement, America is engaged in a great national conversation regarding racial equity and social justice. But sometimes the hardest part of joining a conversation is knowing how to get started. The good news is, there are plenty of resources just waiting to empower you. The 2021 Racial Equity & Social Justice Challenge series, powered by United Way of Delaware (UWDE), Delaware Racial Justice Coalition, and YWCA Delaware, is a monthly journey of self-discovery designed to help Delawareans build more effective social justice habits, particularly those dealing with issues of race, power, privilege, and leadership. For five consecutive days each month between February and December 2021, participants are prompted with a daily e-mail challenge — such as reading an article, listening to a podcast, or watching a video–and are then encouraged to reflect on that content and to relate the situation to their own lives. Participants discover how racial inequity and social injustice impact our community. The goal is to build new understandings and new connections and in so doing, to begin dismantling systemic racism in Delaware. The 2021 Challenge is an evolution of what began with the 21-Day Racial Equity & Social Justice Challenge in 2020, which occurred weekdays from Monday, August 17, through Monday, September 14. Over 8,000 Delawareans signed up to participate! Sign up now for the 2021 Challenge, and check out the 2020 archive for all of last year’s challenge content! More information here.





Seminary Built on Slavery and Jim Crow Labor has Begun Paying Reparations

The Virginia Theological Seminary is giving cash to descendants of Black Americans who were forced to work there. The program is among the first of its kind.



One night in 1858, Carter Dowling, an enslaved Black man forced to work without pay at the Virginia Theological Seminary in Northern Virginia, made the brave decision to escape.

He made it to Philadelphia, where he met the famed abolitionist William Still. He then continued north to Canada and, after the Civil War, returned to Washington, D.C., where he was able to open a bank account for his children. He eventually went on to work as a labor organizer in Buffalo.

To this day, Mr. Dowling’s family line continues. And, most likely for one of the first times in American history, his descendants could receive cash payments for his forced labor.

Read entire article here.







From Our Local Churches, Leaders, and Other Dioceses





From the Episcopal Church


  • Episcopal Church Releases Racial Justice Audit of Leaders
    The report offers insights into race and power in the church. After two years and more than 1,300 surveys, the ground-breaking Racial Justice Audit of Episcopal Leadership is now available to the wider church and public. The audit identifies nine “patterns” of systemic racism – ranging from the historical context of church leadership to current power dynamics — that will also be highlighted in three public webinars in May and June. More information in English and Spanish here
  • Becoming Beloved Community – complete document
  • Becoming Beloved Community grants available for local and regional efforts Applications due April 12, 2021 The Presiding Officers’ Advisory Group on Beloved Community Implementation is pleased to announce the availability of grants to catalyze the church’s work of racial healing, reconciliation and justice. Allocated by the 79th General Convention of The Episcopal Church, the intent for this funding is to build capacity and increase Episcopal engagement in four primary fields: telling the truth about our churches and race, proclaiming the dream of Beloved Community, practicing Jesus’ way of healing and reconciliation, and repairing the breach in institutions and society. Read more (In English and Spanish): http://iam.ec/pa2021BBCGrants
  • Sacred Ground: A Film-Based Dialogue Series on Race & Faith
  • Read Presiding Bishop Curry’s Word to the Church: When the Cameras are Gone, We Will Still Be Here
  • Responding to Racist Violence as the People of God
  • Episcopal Peace Fellowship
  • Supports Episcopalians who pursue social justice and seek to dismantle the barriers that separate us from living as one human family.

 




Amanda Gorman, a 22-year-old poet, read an original work titled, The Hill We Climb, at President Joe Biden’s inauguration on Jan. 20, 2021.






The SSO and featured guest University of Michigan Men’s Glee Club, lead by conductor Eugene Rogers, will premiere a newly commissioned fully orchestrated version of “The Seven Last Words of the Unarmed” by composer Joel Thompson, made possible in part with the support of Linda and Stuart Nelson. This is a multi-movement work honoring the lives of Michael Brown, Trayvon Martin, Oscar Grant, Eric Garner, Kenneth Chamberlain, Amadou Diallo, and John Crawford.





A conversation with Robin DiAngelo, author of White Fragility.





A conversation with local leaders and pastors on the 21 Day Racial Equity and Social Justice Challenge.






Cadex Herrera, left, was one of the artists who created a memorial mural of George Floyd near the site in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where he died. Photo: Xena Goldman






Co-creator of George Floyd mural is an Episcopalian with a passion for social justice art

 

 

One of the mural’s lead artists, Cadex Herrera, is an Episcopalian from White Bear Lake, Minnesota, who immigrated to the United States from Belize when he was 19. Herrera works as an elementary school behavioral specialist who creates art on the side.