IMPLEMENTING THE UNITED CHURCH OF CANADA’S ANTI-RACISM POLICY : 2017 – 2018
The Equity Committee, and the Intercultural/Interfaith Action Group, Bay of Quinte Conference will work towards the acceptance of the UCC’s anti-racism policy, approved at the 37th General Council, through presentations at Presbytery meetings during Fall 2017 – February 2018.
The policy is on line at the Conference office website, titled THAT ALL MAY BE ONE. an introduction reads: “The journey toward racial justice is ongoing. This policy is but one step in the journey; we hope you will participate in, and create, many more. As you read and share this document, consider how you might deepen and apply your understanding of racism in your own context.”
The policy identifies four areas of work that are necessary for the church to move toward becoming an anti-racism institution:
- Participate fully
- Organize for diversity
- Act justly
- Speak to the world
In the first area, we strive for the full participation of all peoples with the United Church, particularly in decision-making bodies. In the second, we promote positive relationships among diverse groups within the church. In the third, we aim to act justly within our own courts, structures, policies, and practices. And in the fourth, we commit to supporting anti-racism work within society at large.
STATEMENT OF BELIEFS – (drawn from the Anti-Racism Policy Statement, adopted by the 37th General Council (2000).
We believe we are all equal before God.
We believe racism is a sin and violates God’s desire for humanity.
We believe racism is present in our society and in our church, and throughout time has manifested itself in many forms in varying degrees.
We believe that the struggle against racism is a continuous effort. Therefore our anti-racism policy statement is only a first step. It provides the basis for the creation of a church where all are welcome, where all feel welcome, and where diversity is as natural as breathing.
We believe change is possible. We believe in forgiveness, reconciliation, and transformation and the potential to learn from stories and experiences.
We believe we are all called to work against racism and for a society in which the words of the gospel are realized among us.
We believe in a vision of society in which these words of the gospel are realized:
It is through faith that all of you are God’s people in union with Christ Jesus. Y You were baptized into union with Christ, and now you are clothed, so to speak, w with the life of Christ. So there is no difference between Jews and Gentiles, b between slaves and free persons, between men and women; you are all one in u union with Christ Jesus. (Galatians 3:36-28).
May God’s Holy Spirit guide our hearts and minds towards implementation of this vision, in Bay of Quinte Conference.
Aruna Alexander Team Leader