I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another.
Across the land, racism and hate are on the rise. The Southern Poverty Law Center reports that the number of hate groups in America has grown by 30 percent over the past four years, while the FBI says the number of hate crimes increased by 17 percent in 2017 alone. Meanwhile, racial discrimination and inequality remain a formidable barrier to quality education, employment, housing, health care, and equal justice under the law in throughout the nation.
As Episcopalians, we are called to reconciliation, the spiritual practice of seeking loving, liberating, and life-giving relationships with God and one another, and striving to heal and transform injustice and brokenness in ourselves, our communities, institutions, and society. As the late Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. so eloquently put it: “The end is reconciliation; the end is redemption; the end is the creation of the beloved community.”
As part of our commitment to work toward the beloved community, the Anti-Racism Commission of the Diocese operates a four-part training program that is required for all clergy and available to all across the Diocese.
Each one of us has a part to play in eliminating racism in the church, society and the world. Our Anti-Racism Commission offers training and resources to increase awareness of the racism around us, and help each of us live into our Baptismal Covenant to “strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being.”