Sacred Conversations to End Racism
In 2018 Sacred Conversations to End Racism (SC2ER), a Restorative Racial Justice Journey curriculum, was created to address and dismantle racism within the Christian Church and society.
The study guide and accompanying resources debunk and correct myths that claim Europeans and European descendants are a dominant culture and that their assigned skin color, white, makes them superior over people groups who are not European.
About the Curriculum
Phase One Introduction
By Rev. Velda Love
Restorative Justice Journey
By Rev. Dr. John C. Dorhauer
The Myth Called Race
By Rev. Traci Blackmon
Sacred Conversations to End Racism includes learning tools and resources such as books, videos, documentaries, articles, art, and music. These resources represent cultures and people groups whose lived experiences and perspectives are correctives to the historical and contemporary harm, injury, and trauma enacted upon non-European people groups.
Participants on the Sacred Conversations journey:
- Explore relevant and practical ways to have conversations that are inclusive of diverse cultures and ethnic identities
- Engage with biblical texts regarding equitable treatment of all God’s people
- Gain an understanding of the historical and contemporary myths associated with race
- Participate in active listening and response techniques
- Learn inclusive non-colonial terms for people groups
- Develop strategies to move from conversations to advocacy and activism
Everyone is invited to be on the journey as a witness and transformative presence with God’s beloved inclusive global community.
Objectives of the Curriculum
The Sacred Conversations to End Racism study reeducates and corrects historical narratives and uses culture-centered resources to decolonize one’s thinking and decenter whiteness.
The intensive study introduces daily life and spiritual practices and assists participants to take a deeper look into—history, how one is socialized, and examine cultural-ethnic ways of being. Anti-racism work involves an inward interrogation of biases, prejudices, internalized white supremacy and internalized racism, microaggressive insults and assaults, and overt racist behaviors.
Restorative racial justice work is internal and external. God did not create superior people groups. Therefore, Christians who claim solidarity with Jesus are called to radical and prophetic ministries of equity, liberation, and justice for all.
Why does this curriculum matter now?
The Christian Church, U.S. Supreme Court, and U.S. government officials practiced and instituted structural and systemic racism through policies and laws supporting race myths as truths producing the outcome plaguing society today known as racism. The laws and policies created over the last 400 years continue to impact predominantly African American communities. However, all communities of non-European ancestry are impacted by racism, xenophobia, discrimination, oppression, and racial micro and macroaggressions daily.
Dominant cultures and superior people groups do not exist. Race categories were created to justify practices of genocide and enslavement. The practices remain intact in 2021 and are considered crimes against humanity—trafficking humans for labor, profit, and ethnic cleansing for the purposes of land theft, and wealth accumulation.
Sacred Conversations to End Racism skillfully builds a common analysis and shared vocabulary for people of faith to dismantle racism in our hearts, our churches, and the wider world. SC2ER moves beyond content to suggest both in praxis and design that this sacred work can only be done in community. By immersing the learner (and we all are continually learning) within a cohort community that spans geography, age, and gender, sexual, and racial identities, we discover the heart of this work–deep listening and collaborative labor in the context of relationships of accountability. Dr. Velda Love is transforming the work of racial justice in the United Church of Christ, inviting us to join this sacred journey together. It is not easy work or a journey that can be made half-heartedly. Rather it is the lens through which our study of scripture, our understanding of God and one another is made new. I highly recommend Sacred Conversations to End Racism.Rev. Amanda Hendler-Voss
“Restorative racial justice work requires an internal interrogation of ideologies, beliefs, and daily practices. God did not create superior people groups. Therefore, Christians who claim solidarity with Jesus are called to radical and prophetic ministries of equity, liberation, and justice for all.”Rev. Dr. Velda Love
Questions? Contact UCC.
Rev. Dr. Velda Love
Minister for Racial Justice