Irenic Thoughts

Irenic. The word means peaceful. This web log (or blog) exists to create an ongoing, and hopefully peaceful, series of comments on the life of King of Peace Episcopal Church. This is not a closed community. You are highly encouraged to comment on any post or to send your own posts.


The sin of racism

The bishops of the Episcopal Church have recently issued a pastoral letter on the sin of racism. The letter says in part
The fundamental truth undergirding this vision is that all are made in the image of God. It is in our diversity that we discover the fullness of that image. If we judge one class or race or gender better than another, we violate that desire and intent of God. And when our social and cultural systems exacerbate or codify such judgments, we do violence to that which God has made. Racism is a radical affront to the good gift of God, both in the creation described in Genesis, and in the reality of the Incarnation. Jesus came among us to bring an end to that which divides us, as Paul so clearly identifies in Galatians 3:28, "in Christ there is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female."
It goes on to say that
The world has witnessed the evil of institutionalized racism and classism in the United States in the aftermath of the hurricanes of 2005. The poor and persons of color were often served last—or not at all—while wealthy and privileged residents had greater resources to escape the immediate danger of the hurricanes and begin the process of rebuilding. We are all shamed by the sin of racism in the reality of inequity in housing, employment, educational and healthcare opportunities, and the disaster response.
The full text of the pastoral letter is found online at: The Sin of Racism: A Call to Covenant


  • At 3/31/2006 11:25 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I was with them until they invoked the hurricanes, and then I lost what little respect I had for them. Hurricanes do not choose where they hit on the basis of race, and I don't think the inadequacies of the disaster response had anything to do with race. It was just a matter of inadequate preparation, imcomplete communication, bureaucratic incompetence, and overwhelming catastrophe. In fact, the poor, "minority" neighborhoods got much more media coverage than the "nonminority" areas did regardless of poverty. I saw more racism in the media coverage than in anything else.
    My father has gone to on hurricane relief trips several times and the one thing he has said is consistent among all the disasters he has worked is that disaster makes stupid differences like the shade of ones skin disappear. Everyone is in this together. I hate to see the Episcopal Church grovel in false humility because they are jumping on the racism bandwagon. "Oh look how pious we are, we're apologizing for racism." If we truly want to rid ourselves or racism, our behavior will change to treat all people equally regardless of the darkness or lightness of their skin. And while I refuse to treat anyone differently because of the color of their skin, I refuse to apologize for the color of my own.

  • At 3/22/2010 2:15 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    One “Poor White Peoples” Response
    (Or, This Honky's Turn To Talk)

    I don’t want your sympathy.
    I don’t want your sarcasm.
    I just want simple human respect.

    I’m not responsible for slavery.
    I’m not responsible for Jim Crow.
    My mother wasn’t even born yet.

    I never kept you out.
    I never took your seat.
    I can barely remember segregation.

    I don’t deserve your anger.
    I don’t deserve your hate.
    I certainly don’t treat you like that.

    I’m not out to get you.
    I’m not out to hurt you.
    So, don’t stereo type me with that.

    I see you as a person.
    I see you as God’s own.
    What more can one expect?

    I don’t want your sympathy.
    I don’t want your sarcasm.
    I just want your respect.

    @ copyright April 2001, by T. M. M.

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