1. Make a formal commitment to devote regular time each week. Choose at least 2 other people to help hold you accountable. Looking to connect? The Racial Justice Network meets regularly. We can provide support, resources, training, coaching and encouragement.
2. Find and follow a POC-led organization. Show up to public actions and meetings. Listen and learn. Donate time and money to mutual aid efforts. (If you are a rural church, check out this list by Rural Organizing Project.)
3. Do Your Own Work. Pick a book, podcast or video. Read slowly and notice your experience: what happens in your body as you read? Reflect on your resistance, curiosity, grief or rage. What awareness or understanding or action is being called forth in this moment? Take notes or talk with a friend. Identify areas where you need to grow.
4. Work as a church. Coordinate to show up to actions together. If you read a book or watch a movie, go beyond just watching and identify what concrete steps you’ll take as a result of what you have experienced. Check out this list of recommended videos. Contact us if you’re interested in borrowing a movie or need help purchasing a film.
5. Re-learn your church’s history. Begin by hosting Walidah Imarisha’s excellent presentation “Why Aren’t There More Black People in Oregon?: A Hidden History” to learn more about our region’s history. Then learn more about the indigenous owners of your church’s land. (Archives exist at Pacific University, and we are working on providing you with a resource guide for this work.)
6. Examine the way your church functions. How is white supremacy culture at work in your church? Engage with your pastor(s), church council, and committees or ministry teams. Dig deeper.
* Commit to pray each week for racial justice. Dismantling racism requires the personal, cultural and institutional transformation of our society. White folks: how is God calling you to repent of racism and work to repair the damage done by your ancestors? How can we invite God to transform us, our families, our communities, our church?