This is a network of Jesus followers across the state committed to being anti-racist leaders and committed to action in our hearts, our community, and our church. The Racial Justice Network - NC Synod is a platform for growth and action anchored in three key components: courses, a forum, and events - all through a digital platform. The bedrock of our work together are courses - if you put your energy in one place, it's there. Postings on the digital platform will complement courses, highlight resources, and be a place for reflection and discussion. Events are focused on enrichment - like an evening of Freedom Songs or Spoken word poetry (Y'all that happened!).
As the whitest denomination (ELCA - we're talking to you!) in the United States, we must actively dismantle white supremacy and name racism as a sin - and we do: Racism is a sin. White Supremacy in all forms is condemned. This is a space to live into these truths. We will listen to leaders of color. We will reflect, confess, and repent. We will ally ourselves for the sake of the world.
This network will also do the necessary work of redistributing wealth. All participant fees are being matched by the North Carolina Synod. 50% of these funds will be reinvested in our communities of color as a testimony to God's work in and through these communities. Additionally, as leaders of colors share wisdom or we make use of their tools, they will be compensated for their work.
When you join the Racial Justice Network, you are joining a community. A community that will covenant to do the hard, uncomfortable work. As Jesus followers called to love one another with deep compassion, we commit to the following covenant for our work together:
I will speak for myself from my own experience. We agree that no one should be required or expected to speak for their whole race or gender.
I will commit to hearing voices that have to fight to be heard elsewhere. We will share the air, providing intentional time for silence and listening to the voices of our black, brown, and indigenous siblings.
My contribution to the conversation will be truth rooted in love. Hate will not be tolerated.
When I encounter something that challenges my preconceived notions, I will consider it an opportunity to learn and grow and lean into the discomfort.
I understand that this place is not perfect and that I am not perfect, but I am committed to participating in this network as an opportunity to grow in my own understanding.