Standing Committee Statement on the Legacy of Systemic White Supremacy
“For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:38-39)
The legacy of systemic white supremacy divides the Church, the Body of Christ. The Standing Committee of the Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina adds our voice of protest for the unfair treatment of African Americans. The murder of George Floyd at the hands of law enforcement Memorial Day 2020 was another tragic event unveiling the legacy of white supremacy. The Standing Committee supports the statements regarding George Floyd issued by the bishops of North Carolina, the Rt. Rev. Samuel Rodman and the Rt. Rev. Anne Hodges-Copple.
The Standing Committee has been examining ways in which the Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina has been supporting systemic racism. We acknowledge that racism continues to plague our diocesan systems. The Winter 2020 North Carolina Disciple magazine highlighted the work we have been doing to extricate white supremacy from the Standing Committee. We critically examined the effects on our canonical responsibilities: interviewing postulants and candidates for Holy Orders, and approving or denying the real estate transactions of our congregations. The Standing Committee is taking action to repent and make amends for the three main manifestations of white supremacy that we identified: by opening access to the power structures at the center of our diocese; by deliberating possible corrections to the unequal distribution of money and human resources in the Diocese (reparations); and by tackling the legacy of white supremacy in our worship, including images, Christian formation resources and language.
The Standing Committee continues to devote time during our monthly meetings to examining ways we as part of the Body of Christ are maintaining the status quo. The Standing Committee commits itself to help bring about the “Beloved Community” which Jesus demands us to become. The Standing Committee affirms that nothing will separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus.