Taking the next faithful step, the Diocesan Convention overwhelmingly passed a resolution of commitment–toward repentance and reparations for the Diocese of Washington’s “long, complicated history of participation in, and benefit from, anti-Black racism.”
The resolution is an important marker on a lengthy journey, stating our intention to continue educating ourselves about past and present harms done, and a commitment to make repair.
As our working definition of reparations states:
Reparations is the spiritual and material process to remember, restore, reconcile and make amends for historical and continuing wrongs against humanity that can never be singularly reducible to monetary terms, but must include a substantial investment and surrender of resources.
The Reparations Committee will consist of two working groups–one focused on continuing the work of education; the other addressing matters of policy and practice. We are now accepting applications from those members of the diocese who would like to be considered for this important work.
Read the Resolution as Amended on the Diocesan Convention webpage.
Submit an application to serve on the Reparations Committee.
For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ.
1 Corinthians 12:12
The School for Christian Faith and Leadership, birthed at the beginning of the pandemic, continues to hold this proclamation by Paul to the Corinthians as a core driving principle. Every baptized person is a full member of the body of Christ, with gifts to fulfill the mission of the Church.
The School for Christian Faith and Leadership offers both online and in-person events as well as curriculum for congregations. Since September 2021, we have offered 25 courses to equip more than 500 congregational leaders across the diocese for their ministries of administration, justice, stewardship, formation, pastoral care, and parish vitality with both online and in-person events. More than a dozen congregations have used our curricula, including CREATE and A Faithful Life, resources developed for the Diocese of Washington for both youth and adults to learn more about The Episcopal Church and the Christian life.
You can view our offerings at www.edow.org/school. Fall 2022 offerings will be announced soon.
In addition to courses, the School for Christian Faith and Leadership has developed a Path of Discipleship with a suite of resources to help members of your congregation grow in faith.
The Rev. Jenifer Gamber
Director for the School for Christian Faith and Leadership and the Tending Our Soil Thriving Congregations Initiative
The Episcopal Diocese of Washington is committed to bravely uncovering, understanding, reckoning with and acting to dismantle racism within ourselves, our faith communities, the diocese and our localities.
Save the date: Bishop Mariann and members of the Diocesan Reparations Task Force invite you to attend Repairing the Breach: A Symposium on Reparations on Saturday, October 1 from 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. at Calvary Episcopal Church.
We will come together as a diocese to continue our shared work to reckon with our diocesan history of participation in anti-Black racism and learn more about the legacy of benefit we’ve received from that participation. This symposium will lay the groundwork for a resolution publicly acknowledging these harms to be presented and the 2023 Diocesan Convention.
The agenda will include:
- A call to action from Bishop Mariann
- A presentation on the diocese’s historical involvement with chattel slavery
- Lessons from reparations efforts outside the Diocese of Washington
- Testimonies from diocesan congregations undertaking the difficult work of investigating their own histories with anti-Black racism
- Insights from Washington area Black community leaders
- A keynote address from the Rev. Dr. Kelly Brown Douglas, Dean of Episcopal Divinity School at Union Theological Seminary and Canon Theologian at Washington National Cathedral
- Break-outs groups with role-playing conversations on reparations
Our journey toward repairing the breach will not be without its challenges. Yet our commitment to justice and equity requires that we walk this road of self-discovery, understanding, confession, repentance, and, ultimately, restitution for our institutional involvement with white supremacy.
You’ll leave the day motivated and inspired to further engage this liberating and life-giving gospel work in your own congregations.
Repairing the Breach: A Symposium on Reparations will take place at Calvary Episcopal Church (820 6th St NE, Washington, DC 20002) from 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 1. Parking is available, and the Church is metro accessible via Union Station. Lunch is included and participation is free.
Questions? Contact the Rev. Peter Jarrett-Schell, chair of the Diocesan Reparations Task Force