It's a call for our time.
Racism continues to hold a grip on our nation. We see this enduring reality through the widening wealth gap between blacks and whites; disparate health impacts for African Americans from Covid 19, child birth, and climate change; and the mass incarceration of people of color – to name just a few examples. Over the centuries, white faith communities have been deeply complicit in this story of oppression. But we believe there’s a stirring among people of faith, a hunger, for racial justice and healing. Many just aren’t sure how to go about it and could use a partner along the way.
The mission of Interwoven Congregations is to help faith communities in the U.S. become agents for racial justice and healing -- within their congregations, in their community, and across society at large. Understanding that white people bear a primary responsibility in uprooting racism, our strategy is to first engage with individual white faith communities about the realities of racism and then second equip those congregations to take action to promote racial equity and healing -- including, as appropriate, thru partnerships with faith communities of different racial compositions.
Interwoven Congregations supports congregations in their work to:
Confront the Reality of Racism. Examining and acknowledging the pervasive reality of racism across our history to the present day is a foundational step in seeking racial justice and healing. This can take place through a congregation’s anti-racism self-assessment; group studies with select texts, podcasts, films; larger educational events; and visits to relevant historical sites and educational institutions.
Build Relationships. Reaching across the divide of race is one way to disarm the biases that we all carry. Such relationships also can further ignite and sustain people’s commitment to pursuing racial justice. Interwoven Congregations supports the development of such relationships between the congregation and other community groups and, when appropriate, through a partnership with another congregation of a different racial composition. We nurture these relationship through small groups, joint activities and projects that knit the two congregations together over time.
Practice Antiracism. Learning about racism and building relationships, while vital, are precursors to the most important step of all: taking specific action to address systemic racism within the congregation, in the immediate community and across the nation at large. Drawing on case studies from congregations around the nation, Interwoven Congregations helps congregations develop their own strategies to help uproot systemic racism.
Tapping into our Faith. Pursuing racial justice and healing is challenging, long-term work. But that is why we are “Interwoven Congregations,” because we believe people of faith can be strengthened and sustained by their faith to do the work that, on our own, might overwhelm us. Faith communities can be agents for racial justice and healing in our nation. Indeed, we believe they need to be if we hope to move beyond the legacy of racism and become a society where all people are celebrated and can thrive.
The Governing Board of Interwoven Congregations:
Brother John Anderson
The Governing Board of Directors of Interwoven Congregations includes five people who are passionate about social justice and the role faith communities can play in addressing racism. The Board members first convened in February 2020 and affirmed the mission of Interwoven Congregation to organize and support partnerships between faith communities of different racial compositions in order to foster racial justice and healing in the United States.
We our honored to have Ambassador Andrew Young and other leading voices serve on the Interwoven Congregations Advisory Board.
Rev. Pat Jackson and Roxane Rucker serve as the Co-Executive Directors of Interwoven Congregations.
Interwoven Congregations is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt nonprofit organization.
Please contact us to:
Learn more about Interwoven Congregations,
Find out more about how your faith community could participate as an Interwoven Congregation,
Be added to our distribution list for the upcoming issues of Interwoven Congregations Quarterly and other special notices.
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