LOAM on Racial Justice
In July 2020, Faith’s Church Council signed a commitment to the Baltimore Washington Conference (BWC) to be a church that embodies antiracism. It recognizes that the sin of racism has been destructive to the unity of the United Methodist Church and that it continues to cause painful division and marginalization. In signing the commitment, Faith pledged to confront and seek to eliminate racism, whether in organizations or in individuals, in every facet of its life and in society at large.
At the same time, the Church Council endorsed the creation of the Love One Another Justice and Inclusion Ministry (LOAM). It was entrusted to build on the church’s public affirmation by encouraging study and action, working collaboratively with others to address concerns that threaten the cause of racial justice. The LOAM team is undertaking activities to support the congregation's commitment to understanding anti-racism and beginning to understand how works of justice are part of how we are called as disciples in the world. While we are not all of one mind politically, scientifically, economically, or socially, we profess to be of one mind in our baptismal vows. We “renounce the spiritual forces of wickedness, reject the evil powers of this world, and repent of our sin.” We accept the freedom God gives us “to resist evil, injustice and oppression in whatever forms they present themselves.”
An Anti-Racism Care Group has been meeting periodically by Zoom to educate and support one another to understand the manifestations of personal and institutional racism. It has maintained a curated collection of resources that members have found helpful to grow in their understanding of racism and to equip them to be anti-racist. Those who are interested in growing in their understanding and exploring actions they can take to fulfil their baptismal vows are welcome to join this small group at any time. Meeting dates and times and credentials are reported in What’s Working at Faith This Week, which is distributed to friends and members of FUMC every Friday.
The people and churches of the Baltimore-Washington Conference put their faith and love into action in the on-going work of racial justice. The Conference provides many resources and opportunities to learn from laity and clergy of other churches in our community. Together we identify shared fears and the barriers that keep us from collaborative action, in order that we may overcome those fears and work toward solutions.