Racism & Reconciliation
The members of the Racism and Reconciliation committee recognize the presence of racism so deeply entrenched in our society and the harm and pain it inflicts on individuals, organizations and communities. The group seeks to increase our own awareness and deepen our understanding of the structure and impact of oppression, so that we can work most effectively for healing, reconciliation and justice in the St. Louis region.
Contact Lisa Burks if you’d like to join at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Upcoming Anti-Racism opportunities:
Save the Date for the next "Dinner and a Movie" Series with Rock Church and College Church
Next Date Thursday, September 28
Time Pizza at 5:45 pm, Movie starts at 6:15 pm, Discussion at 8:30pm
Location Rock Church gym
1118 North Grand Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63106
Film "13th" is a 2016 American documentary by director Ava DuVernay. The film explores the "intersection of race, justice and mass incarceration in the United States;" it is titled after the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, which freed the slaves and prohibited slavery (unless as punishment for a crime).
Pizza will be provided.
Please RSVP to Christine at email@example.com or 977-7309.
Interested in a small anti-racism book group? To join or for more information contact Christine Dragonette at firstname.lastname@example.org or (314) 977-7309.
Invitation to Catholic Prayer and Action for Racial Justice
As anticipation of the verdict of the Jason Stockley murder trial looms, we would like to invite our Catholic brothers and sisters into deeper conversation about racism and how it shows up in our community. Former police officer Stockley is charged with the killing of Anthony Lamar Smith in 2011 by firing five shots at close range.
Catholic social teaching tells us that “how we organize our society-- in economics and politics, in law and policy-- directly affects human dignity and the capacity of individuals to grow in community” (USCCB website on CST). As Catholics and people of faith, we are called to reject the sin of racism not only as it shows up through overt displays of prejudice as we saw in Charlottesville, but also as it reveals itself more covertly in the systems with which we interact regularly. Fear that justice will not be served through the courts in the Stockley trial is founded in the reality that people of color are disproportionately harmed by our legal system. Police officers who harm or kill people of color rarely see a trial, let alone receive a guilty verdict.
This is a difficult reality for many of us to digest because it requires admitting, as stated by Rev. Bryan Massingale, “...we live in a country where certain lives, in this case African-American lives, don’t matter. That’s a very uncomfortable truth, because if we face it squarely, we have to ask ourselves why. Or, even more pointedly, who benefits from the fact these lives don’t matter? That leads us into very uncomfortable territory. It’s a conversation we desperately need to have, but it’s one for which our country is very poorly prepared.”
Let us embrace this conversation in all of its discomfort because systemic racism directly impacts the lives and dignity of people of color in our pews and in our broader community. Please join our parishes as we pray and act for racial justice.
Here are some upcoming opportunities:
Pray together: St. Margaret of Scotland (3854 Flad Ave, 63110) and St. Nicholas (701 N. 18th St., STL 63103) will be open for prayer and conversation the day of or day after the verdict comes out. Please contact Erin Brennan with questions about St. Margaret’s hours at email@example.com or Fr. Art Cavitt about St. Nicholas at (314) 231-2860 ex. 24. You are also invited to join every Sunday at 7pm on the stairs of St. Francis Xavier (Grand & Lindell) for a peace and justice vigil.
Join a small racial justice reading group: Contact Christine Dragonette if interested at firstname.lastname@example.org or (314) 977-7309.
White folks: engage your children in conversation about race: Click here to learn more about We Stories and consider signing up for January.
Plug into local social justice work: Consider connecting with a local group confronting issues affecting people of color. Here’s a list to get you started.
St. Alphonsus Liguori “Rock” Church
St. Augustine Church
St. Charles Lwanga Center:The Archdiocesan Office of Black Catholic Ministries
St. Francis Xavier “College” Church
St. Margaret of Scotland Catholic Church
St. Nicholas Catholic Church
Sts. Teresa and Bridget Church