February 3, 2021

Published February 3, 2021 by St Matthews Lutheran Church in Daily Message

Black History Month –  Give thanks for the gifts, accomplishments, influence and witness of our African-descent neighbors who stand together with us as partners in the gospel, doing God’s work in the world. Though unified as siblings in Christ, we ask God to guide and help our church in its commitment to socio-economic equity and racial justice and reconciliation. Prayer Ventures, Living Lutheran

ELCA Anti-Racism Pledge

And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him (Colossians 3:17).
As church we are called to confess the sin of racism, condemn the ideology of white supremacy, and strive for racial justice and peace. Beyond statements and prayers, we are called to also act and respond to injustices. We invite you to commit to one or more of the actions below:

  1. Sign the pledge below, “I commit to study, prayer and action to become an anti-racist individual in an anti-racist church,” and share your participation on social media using #ELCA4justice.
  2. Work to dismantle racial injustice by 2. listening to voices, experiences and the expertise of people of color. Learn about the 2. ELCA ethnic-specific associations and their 2. strategies.
  3. Learn the history of systemic racism in this country and the ways racism and white supremacy impact every aspect of our life together.
  4. Join, support or attend your synod’s anti-racism team or work with your synod leadership to start one in your congregation. Study the ELCA social statement “4. Freed in Christ: Race, Ethnicity, and Culture” and the “4. Explanation of the Declaration of the ELCA to People of African Descent.”
  5. Explore and use on “God’s work. Our hands.” Sunday the forthcoming ELCA Advocacy resources on a “Just Society Supporting the Health of All,” which are focused on advancing racially equitable public policies, and by engaging in 5. ELCAvotes to encourage and ensure voting rights for all.
  6. Start where you are by joining community organizations working for racial justice.
  7. Reach out to build or 7. deepen relationships with Historic Black Churches. Consider using the congregational resource “7. Understanding One Another,” co-authored by the ELCA and the African Methodist Episcopal Church, or our 7. Joint Statement of Mission with the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church as a way to get started.
  8. Explore and use the 8. anti-racism resources of our ecumenical partners through the 8. A.C.T. Now to End Racism initiative of the National Council of Churches.