Racial Justice in the UCC
For all of you are the children of God. —Galatians 3:28
Each person is created in the image
of God. But whenever we devise, maintain or perpetuate systems and structures
that oppress people based on race and/or ethnicity, we interfere with God’s
purpose and the opportunity for all God’s children to be fully who they are
created to be. Racism is an affront to God.
Racism is racial prejudice plus
power. It is rooted in the belief that one group has racial superiority and
entitlement over others. Its power is manifested in every institution and
system, both nationally and internationally, which was historically established
and continues to function to benefit one group of people to the disadvantage of
other groups. Awareness and education will help us to become anti-racist
individuals and foster the development of anti-racist systems and institutions
that can eliminate privilege for some and oppression for others.
The United Church of Christ and its
predecessor churches have made a priority commitment to supporting policies and
structures that make real our Christian commitment to racial justice. The UCC’s
emphasis means more than simply challenging personal prejudices, but involves a
commitment to in-depth analysis of societal policies and structures that either
work toward the elimination of racism or perpetuate it.
During General Synod 23 an addendum
was added to 1993 Pronouncement calling the UCC to become a Multiracial,
Multicultural Church. The addendum called the UCC to also become an
“Anti-Racist” denomination. In doing so, we encourage all
Conferences and Associations and local churches of the UCC to adopt anti-racism
mandates, including policy that encourages anti-racism programs for all UCC
staff and volunteers.