Anti-Racist Church

UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST CALLED TO BE AN ANTI-RACIST CHURCH

 

ADOPTED 2003 GENERAL SYNOD MULTIRACIAL/MULTICULTURAL ADDENDUM TO 1993 PRONOUNCEMENT AND PROPOSAL FOR ACTION

 

WHEREAS, racism is rooted in a belief of the

superiority of whiteness and bestows benefits,

unearned rights, rewards, opportunities,

advantages, access, and privilege on Europeans

and European descendants; and

 

WHEREAS, the reactions of people of color to

racism are internalized through destructive

patterns of feelings and behaviors impacting

their physical, emotional, and mental health and

their spiritual and familial relationships; and

 

WHEREAS, through institutionalized racism,

laws, customs, traditions, and practices

systemically foster inequalities; and

 

WHEREAS, the United Nations World

Conference against Racism, Racial

Discrimination, Xenophobia, and Related

Intolerance affirmed that racism has historically

through imperialism and colonization created an

unequal world order and power balance with

present global implications impacting

governments, systems, and institutions; and

 

WHEREAS, the denomination has shown

leadership among many United Church of Christ

conferences, associations, and local

congregations by initiating innovative antiracism

programs, by developing anti-racism

facilitators, and in general have made

dismantling racism a priority, there is still much

to be done. As we continue in this effort, the

work we do must reflect the historical and

present experiences and stories of all peoples

impacted by racism. We must work from a

paradigm reflective of the historical

relationships of racial and ethnic groups and

racial oppression within the United Church of

Christ and society; and

 

WHEREAS, the United States finds itself in

increased racial unrest during this period after

the tragedy of September 11, 2001. New studies

show that hate crimes and blatant acts of racial

violence doubled in number during the last half

of 2002 and are continuing to rise. These

outward acts, combined with continued

institutional racism, emphasize the need for antiracism

mobilization within church and society as

we seek to do justice; and

 

WHEREAS, there are growing movements of

peace that have people of all races, backgrounds,

and ages involved, urging us to expand our

knowledge of what racism is and study its

ramifications on all people; and

 

WHEREAS, General Synods of the United

Church of Christ have, since 1963, voted eleven

resolutions, statements, and pronouncements

denouncing racism, and it is time to honor

mandates and expectations of this body and of

the church.

 

THEREFORE LET IT BE RESOLVED, that the

United Church of Christ is called to be an antiracist

church and that we encourage all

Conferences and Associations and local

churches of the United Church of Christ to adopt

anti-racism mandates, including policy that

encourages anti-racism programs for all United

Church of Christ staff and volunteers; and

 

LET IT BE FURTHER RESOLVED, that

Conferences and Associations and local

churches facilitate programs within their

churches that would examine both historic and

contemporary forms of racism and its effects and

that the programs be made available to the

churches; and

 

LET IT BE FURTHER RESOLVED, that

Justice and Witness Ministries provides

leadership in the development and

implementation of programs to dismantle

racism, working in partnership with the

Collegium, Covenanted Ministries, Affiliated

Ministries, Associated Ministries, Conferences,

Associations and local churches in developing

appropriately trained anti-racism facilitators; and

 

LET IT BE FURTHER RESOLVED, that the

Covenanted Ministries of the United Church of

Christ work in concert to dismantle racism in

church and in society and partner with

Conferences and Associations in sharing

resources and costs associated with doing antiracism

work.

 

LET IT BE FINALLY RESOLVED, that the

Justice and Witness Ministries will report the

progress of the development and implementation

of these programs at the Twenty-fifth General

Synod.

 

Funding for the implementation of this

resolution will be made in accordance with the

overall mandates of the affected agencies and

the funds available.

 

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CONTACT INFO

Rev. Karen Georgia Thompson
Minister for Ecumenical and Interfaith Relations
700 Prospect Ave.
Cleveland, Ohio 44115
216-736-2191
thompsonk@ucc.org