Race, Equity and Social Justice Committee
My commandment is this: Love each other as I have loved you. -John 15:12
Welcome to the Race, Equity, and Social Justice Committee at the Episcopal Church of the Ascension! We are a newly formed committee that convened in these pandemic times in response to the social unrest and clear display of inequities that still permeate our culture and country. Our committee is open to anyone feeling a call to action and a need to do something to rid our nation of all forms of inequity. We encourage you to look at our mission statement below to see what types of actions are of importance to us. We meet via zoom roughly every other Thursday at 7:00 pm and would welcome your interest and input. If you have further questions or concerns, you can contact our chairperson, Laurie Yelle at AscensionRESJ@gmail.com.
As our Lord commands and to which we commit in our Baptismal covenant, our mission is to take active and deliberate measures to assure that the
inherent dignity of all peoples is acknowledged, respected, and protected. By all peoples, we mean every adult and child of every race, ethnicity, nationality, gender
identity, sexual orientation, age, physical ability, religious background, and socioeconomic status under God’s creation. We do not overlook but rather respect
and celebrate our differences as God intended. We remember and live into our interconnectedness, knowing that we are only as strong, healthy, happy, and
satisfied as the least of our human family. We use our God-given talents to lift up every member of our human family.
We will achieve this through active and deliberate measures such as:
Creating a safe space to discuss inequities within our church and in our
Becoming a Beloved Community by moving from an inclusive congregation
to a connected congregation where all feel they belong
Encouraging members to work toward actively eliminating injustice
Participating with activities/organizations that are already working to bring equity (e.g., Habitat for Humanity and Identity Inc., Gaithersburg.
Providing educational opportunities for the congregation and community on issues of social justice, race, and inequity that empower them to speak up
and speak out against instances of injustice
Celebrate culturally important days/activities that are present in our community.
Make use of national and diocesan programs such as the Episcopal Diocese of Washington’s Sacred Ground dialogue series and the national Episcopal Church’s initiative “Becoming a Beloved Community,” which includes the “From Many, One” project.
Host seminars, town hall–style meetings, vigils, film viewings, lectures, discussions, and service projects for our congregation and the community, including other faith groups.
Encourage the sharing of stories and experiences.
Recommend media (films, books, articles, lectures, workshops, seminars) that provide diverse perspectives.
Conduct a racial audit: research and write up Ascension’s history with regard to race and other aspects of its diverse history.