June 7, 2020
We, the appointed clergy of Manchester United Methodist Church, mourn the tragic killings of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, and countless other persons of color who, for generations, have been victimized by violence and injustice.
We confess that in the privilege of our whiteness we have failed to consistently and adequately confront the sins of racism and injustice in their many forms. Together, we commit to examining our individual and institutional prejudices, privilege and white fragility.
As Missouri Bishop Bob Farr recently said, “It is not the job of black people to explain the structures of white supremacy, white privilege, racism, police brutality or any of the other byproducts that advance the white standard as the “normative” view. This is white people’s work and our need to engage in this work is urgent. Lives depend on it.“
We covenant to amplify the voices of the oppressed as we listen, reflect and learn from their lived experiences of injustice and pain. We are clear in our conviction that BLACK LIVES MATTER — they matter to God and they matter to us! All lives cannot matter until black lives also matter.
Our faith calls us to follow the example of Jesus Christ who consistently elevated the struggles of the marginalized. Therefore, through the power and grace of the Holy Spirit, we are united in our ongoing and imperfect efforts to seek justice, love mercy and walk humbly with God and others. We won’t always get it right, but it’s the right thing to do. We invite all persons to join us in this difficult and holy work.
Rev. Andy Bryan, Rev. Stephanie Lendt, Rev. Phil Estes, Rev. Winter Hamilton, Rev. Jim Peich
Manchester United Methodist Church
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