One Voice Against Racism and White Supremacy

“As persons called to love one another as God has loved us, we therefore proclaim our commitment to speak with one voice against racism and white supremacy. We stand with those who are targets of racist ideologies and actions.” As church, together we must work to condemn white supremacy in all forms and recommit ourselves to confront and exorcize the sins of injustice, racism and white supremacy in church and society and within ourselves as individuals and households.
ELCA reaffirms commitment to combat racism and white supremacy

Read Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Letter From a Birmingham Jail. Or listen to an audio version.

Books on Race & Social Justice

<strong><em>Dear Church: A Love Letter From a Black Preacher to the Whitest Denomination in the U.S.</em></strong> - Lenny Duncan

Dear Church: A Love Letter From a Black Preacher to the Whitest Denomination in the U.S.
Lenny Duncan

Formerly incarcerated and homeless, Lenny Duncan, now an ELCA pastor, offers a bold new vision for the future of his denomination and the broader mainline Christian community of faith. Dear Church rejects the narrative of ‘church decline’ and calls everyone—leaders and laity alike—to the front lines of the church’s renewal through racial equality and justice.  

<strong><em>I'm Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness</em></strong> - Austin Channing Brown

I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness – Austin Channing Brown

A powerful account of how and why our actions so often fall short of our words. Austin writes in breathtaking detail about her journey to self-worth and the pitfalls that kill our attempts at racial justice. I’m Still Here looks at how white, middle-class, Evangelicalism has participated in an era of rising racial hostility, inviting the reader to confront apathy, recognize God’s ongoing work in the world, and discover how blackness–if we let it–can save us all.

<strong><em>America's Original Sin</em></strong> - Jim Wallis

America’s Original Sin
Jim Wallis

“It’s time we right this unacceptable wrong,” says bestselling author and leading Christian activist Jim Wallis. In America’s Original Sin, Wallis offers a prophetic and deeply personal call to action in overcoming the racism so ingrained in American society. He speaks candidly to Christians–particularly white Christians–urging them to cross a new bridge toward racial justice and healing.

<strong><em>White Fragility</em></strong> - <br>Robin Diangelo

White Fragility
Robin Diangelo

Referring to the defensive moves that white people make when challenged racially, white fragility is characterized by emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt, and by behaviors including argumentation and silence. These behaviors, in turn, function to reinstate white racial equilibrium and prevent any meaningful cross-racial dialogue.

<strong><em>The New Jim Crow</em></strong> - <br>Michelle Alexander

The New Jim Crow
Michelle Alexander

Seldom does a book have the impact of Michelle Alexander’s The New Jim Crow. Since it was first published in 2010, it has been cited in judicial decisions and has been adopted in campus-wide and community-wide reads; it has been the winner of numerous prizes, including the prestigious NAACP Image Award; and it has spent nearly 250 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list.

Just Mercy - <br>Bryan Stephenson

Just Mercy –
Bryan Stephenson

Just Mercy is at once an unforgettable account of an idealistic, gifted young lawyer’s coming of age, a moving window into the lives of those he has defended, and an inspiring argument for compassion in the pursuit of true justice.

Articles, Podcasts & Films

Commemoration of the Emanuel Nine

The ELCA Prayer Service for Commemoration of the Emanuel Nine on June 17, 2020 marks the fifth anniversary of the evening nine people were shot and killed during a Bible study at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C. We join in a time of repentance, mourning and prayer as we remember these nine martyrs and renounce the sins of racism and white supremacy. 

A letter from CU ELCA congregations to Bethel AME Church, Champaign

More resources from the ELCA on the Commemoration of the Emanuel Nine