Racial Healing, Justice, and Reconciliation
The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because he has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives
and recovery of sight to the blind,
to let the oppressed go free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.
St. John’s Community Blog
We keep a number of resources and themed posts about Racial Healing, Justice, and Reconciliation on our blog. These resources include a curated selection of articles, videos, and books. Our blog also contains posts on the theme of reconciliation.
Episcopal Church in Connecticut
By resolution of its Annual Convention in 2018 the Episcopal Church in Connecticut decided to enter a two-year “Season of Racial Healing, Justice, and Reconciliation.” More information on this season and resources on the topic are posted on the ECCT website.
Jesus is calling the St. John’s community to the work of racial justice, reconciliation, and healing as an integral part of our walk of faith in a broken, sinful, and suffering world.
On May 9, 2020, members of St. John’s began to sense a move of God’s Spirit regarding the entrenched systemic racial injustice in our nation. During the discussion of a film on revival, one person expressed pain at the recent police deaths of African Americans and despair over the enduring plague of racism. Another confessed her personal conviction of the sin of white supremacy in her family. She left that week on a pilgrimage of repentance, visiting former slave trading sites from Virginia to Georgia. Two weeks later, protests erupted all over the country in reaction to the death of George Floyd.
Out of this movement of the Spirit has grown a communal desire to pursue repentance, racial justice, reconciliation, and healing. Jesus has been calling us, both individually and as the St. John’s community, to re-orient our understanding of what it means to follow him in a broken and suffering world. In this new orientation, the work of racial reconciliation is not one choice in a series of ministry options, it is an integral part of a new commitment to our gospel witness.
One Body, One Love
In Christ, we are one. As one family, Jesus calls us to bear one another’s burdens. If one member suffers oppression or injustice, we all suffer. We cannot grow in unity unless we grow in knowledge of one another, that is, in holy friendship. Furthermore, for Christ-followers, it is not enough to sympathize with victims of injustice if we do not also work to dismantle the systems of injustice. As Dietrich Bonhoeffer said, “We are not to simply bandage the wounds of victims beneath the wheels of injustice, we are to drive a spoke into the wheel itself.”
“We are not to simply bandage the wounds of victims beneath the wheels of injustice, we are to drive a spoke into the wheel itself.”
Peace & Justice
Jesus calls us to be peacemakers. Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “True peace is not merely the absence of tension; it is the presence of justice.” St. John’s is committed to pursuing racial justice, healing, and reconciliation. Together, we desire to be obedient to the commission in Micah 6:8 to “do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with our God.”
Prayer of St. Francis
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace
Where there is hatred, let me sow love
Where there is injury, pardon
Where there is doubt, faith
Where there is despair, hope
Where there is darkness, light
And where there is sadness, joy
O Divine Master, grant that I may
Not so much seek to be consoled as to console
To be understood, as to understand
To be loved, as to love
For it is in giving that we receive
And it’s in pardoning that we are pardoned
And it’s in dying that we are born to Eternal Life
Micah 6:8 Mural Workshop
Over the summer, the racial justice, healing, and reconciliation team wrestled with creating inclusive and intentional platforms for racial justice within and outside of the church. As a group, we would like to invite the congregation to participate in creating a collaborative mural. In doing so, each participant will create an oil paint image of their understanding of justice. The mural’s theme is Micah 6:8, which reminds believers of justice’s theological and ethical importance. Micah 6:8 reads to “do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with our God.””
What does Micah 6:8 mean to you? Rather than just talking about it, we invite you into a contemplative and artistic response by displaying your thoughts through words, images, or symbols. Read more about this event here.
& RSVP for Oct 11 Workshop