This past year has been an important one for our Holy Trinity Anti-Racism Team and our church. For one, we became members of the Emmaus Collective Pilot Group, joining churches “on the way to, or working on, dismantling white supremacy in their church culture. We are not saying they are done or totally safe, we are saying these are churches who are naming and claiming they that are doing the work.” https://emmauscollective.org/
Secondly, we have agreed to begin a two-year covenant with the Metropolitan Chicago Synod Anti-Racism team so that as we do this work we have support and accountability. Stay tuned for a kick-off event in the fall to mark the beginning of this two-year process!
In the meantime, we invite you to join the team in reading Dear Church: A Love Letter from a Black Preacher to the Whitest Denomination in the U.S. by ELCA Pastor and Executive Director of the Emmaus Collective, Lenny Duncan. You can pre-order the book here, or join the team on July 8 to meet Pastor Lenny in Chicago on his book tour! You can purchase tickets for that event here.
We then plan to read Dear Church in July and discuss it at our next Anti-Racism meeting on August 4th following the 9:30am service at HTLakeview. The team will be meeting upstairs in the St. Mark’s Room and newcomers are always welcome to join us!
If you can’t make it to these events but would like to get involved, please contact Pastor Ben. In closing, below is a reflection from a team member who recently took part in an anti-racism workshop, along with an update and invitation from the Synod Team:
In her June 2nd sermon, Pastor Michelle spoke of Jesus’ ascension as being the beginning of a new journey. To me, the 2 ½ day CROAR Understanding and Analyzing Systemic Racism workshop is like that. As intensive as it is, it is only the beginning of the journey for anyone who has attended and now knows that one cannot go back to an origin of ignorance; ignorance in the systemic use of power to control resources that create and sustain an inequitable existence for people, based on their skin color, gender, sexual orientation, physical and mental health or age. I couldn’t check off a box for this workshop and move on to something else. It is the benchmark, birth, beginning of a new journey, focusing on the work I need to do in my life to root out the systemic racism in my everyday life and the pebbles I will need to drop to invite others to join me to be fellow disrupters in systems around us throughout this country.
by Kris Hiepler-Hartwig
Another Pebble, the Metro Chicago Synod's Antiracism Team, is now in covenant with several churches to work on transforming their congregations. The Synod’s team is focusing on congregational work as well as providing access to various types of training. On July 20, a 1-day Anti-Bias/Anti-Racism workshop will be held at St Luke's Lutheran Church, Logan Square. This is being offered FOR FREE, other than a $10 cost for meals. For more information and to register, go to ABAR Workshop This workshop is designed for educators; those who work in schools and Sunday School teachers are especially encouraged to attend.
by Barbara Wahler, Co-Leader, MCS Antiracism Team