Congregational Self-Assessment Form

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Congregational Self-Assessment Form
United Church of Christ Sacred Conversation on Race

Please set aside time to reflect on the questions below and then write your honest responses, remembering that there are no right or wrong answers. Your input will help the planning committee better understand what is at stake for our congregation in talking about issues of race and racism, and how the Sacred Conversation on Race can be a fruitful and engaging process for everyone. Use as many sheets of paper as you need for your responses.

Before completing this form, please review the terms “race” and “racism” found in the sidebars.  Use additional sheets of paper for your responses to the questions below.

With regard to talking about issues of race and racism, what best describes your congregation (please circle one of the following):
A. We seldom, if ever, discuss race and racism
B. We used to talk about race and racism but other issues are now more important to us
C.  Race and racism are issues that we talk about from time to time
D.  Race and racism are a constant topic of discussion

If you circled A:
1.  Describe why you think issues of race and racism are seldom, if ever, discussed.

2.  Is there resistance in your congregation to talking about race and racism? If so, how would you describe the resistance?

3.  Are there particular issues (related to race or racism) that are too difficult or potentially divisive to discuss? If so, what are these issues and what makes them so difficult or potentially divisive?

4.  If you were to begin discussing race and racism in your congregation, where might you begin and what would you need to make this a fruitful and engaging conversation?

5.  What would be the benefits for your congregation in talking about race and racism?

6.  What would be the costs for your congregation if you do not engage in these Sacred Conversations?

7.  What issues of race and racism are particularly urgent in your local community? Who is taking the lead in addressing these issues? How might your congregation become more informed about, and/or involved in, these efforts on behalf of racial justice?

8.  What would be some first steps that your congregation could take as it seeks to engage the Sacred Conversation on Race?


If you circled B:
1.  Describe when and why issues of race and racism became less important.

2.  Is there resistance in your congregation to talking about race and racism? If so, how would you describe the resistance?

3.  Are there particular issues (related to race or racism) that are too difficult or potentially divisive to discuss?  If so, what are these issues and what makes them so difficult or potentially divisive?

4.  If you were to begin again to discuss race and racism in your congregation, where might you begin and what would you need to make this a fruitful and engaging conversation?

5.  What would be the benefits for your congregation in talking about race and racism?

6.  What would be the costs for your congregation if you do not engage in these Sacred Conversations?

7.  What issues of race and racism are particularly urgent in your local community? Who is taking the lead in addressing these issues? How might your congregation become more informed about, and/or involved in, these efforts on behalf of racial justice?

8.  How might your congregation engage the Sacred Conversation on Race?


If you circled C:
1.  Describe when, how, and where issues of race and racism are talked about in your congregation.

2.  What have been the benefits for your congregation in discussing issues of race and racism?

3.  Is there resistance in your congregation to talking about race and racism? If so, how would you describe the resistance?

4.  Are there particular issues (related to race or racism) that are too difficult or potentially divisive to discuss? If so, what are these issues and what makes them so difficult or potentially divisive?

5.  How might issues of race and racism become more central to your congregation’s life and mission? What do you need to make this happen?

6.  What would be the costs for your congregation if you do not engage in these Sacred Conversations?

7.  What issues of race and racism are particularly urgent in your local community? Who is taking the lead in addressing these issues? How might your congregation become more informed and/or involved in these efforts on behalf of racial justice?

8.  How might your congregation engage the Sacred Conversation on Race?


If you circled D:
1.  Describe why and how race and racism are so often discussed

2.  What have been the benefits for your congregation in discussing issues of race and racism?

3.  What are the growth areas for your congregation in relation to conversations across race? How can you move toward addressing these areas of growth?

4.  Is there resistance in your congregation to talking about race and racism? If so, how would you describe the resistance?

5.  Are there particular issues (related to race or racism) that are too difficult or potentially divisive to discuss? If so, what are these issues and what makes them so difficult or potentially divisive?

6.  How might issues of race and racism become even more central to your congregation’s life and mission? What do you need to make this happen?

7.  What issues of race and racism are particularly urgent in your local community? Who is taking the lead in addressing these issues? How might your congregation become more informed and/or involved in these efforts on behalf of racial justice?

8.  How might your congregation engage the Sacred Conversation on Race?
 

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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