The many videos of police killings of blacks and the starkly unequal impact of Covid -19 on people of color have stripped us of the capacity to ignore both the systemic and the viscerally personal and violent presence of racism in America. What are we to do?
Like everyone else who allows themselves to face this reality, we at UUFR are appalled and discouraged. But as we strive to answer the question, UUFR has the benefit of an existing anti-racism ministry team. The team has no answers. But for the past three years we have provided a thoughtful process of inquiry.
The Living the Pledge 12-hour workshops have educated, and hopefully awakened, more than 170 members and friends to the need for white people to take personal responsibility for solving systemic racism
Seventeen children of adult participants have gone through a program to begin their process of dealing with race. Each of the adult graduates is asked to identify specific actions to which they will pledge to carry through for creating an anti-racist society
The Anti-Racism Ministry Team (ARM) has offered up to five programs each year. Workshops have been put on hold since the pandemic. But the curriculum is being adapted to a virtual platform. We expect to offer it again in the Fall of 2020.
As we are constrained by pandemic restrictions it is especially challenging that we must find new ways of supporting each other as we work for change. We are offering a “reunion” program on Zoom for all graduates of Living the Pledge on June 27th. Those present will have the opportunity to reflect on their journey since the training in supportive small groups, as well as to work on finding ways to engage in living our pledge which fit our present reality.
For questions or to request an invitation to the Reunion zoom meeting, contact Richard Kevin.
For the Anti-Racism Ministry Team