C034 Endorsing Resolutions Proposed by the Union of Black Episcopalians for Adoption by the 80th General Convention

The 237th Annual Convention of the Episcopal Church in Delaware affirm the work of the Union of Black Episcopalians and commends and urges robust consideration of their resolutions at the 80th General Convention.

The resolutions are:

1) Funding for Funding of the Chaplaincies at the HBCUs
2) Promote Equity and Reduce Differences in Health Care Outcomes
3) The Creation of a Clergy Retirement Contribution Fund
4) Continued Funding of the Beloved Community
5) The Funding of the Implementation of the Internalized Oppression Curriculum
6) Establishing Equity in the Awarding of TEC Grants
7) Address the Issue of Voter Suppression
8) Address the Issue of Mass Incarceration
9) Address the Issue of Private Prisons
10) Inclusion of a Hymn in Honor of Dr. Artemisia Bowden
11) To Direct the Removal of the Name of the Rev. William Porcher DuBose from the Lesser Feasts and Fasts Calendar
12) To Include Barbara Clementine Harris on the Lesser Feasts and Fasts Calendar
13) To Establish Lift Every Voice and Sing as the National Hymn
14) To Encourage the Usage of the Sacred Ground Curriculum
15) To Adopt the Emmett Till Anti-Lynching Act
16) Requiring Action in Response to TEC’s Racial Audit
17) Regarding the Inclusion of Juneteenth in the Lesser Feasts and Fasts Calendar

“Will you seek and serve Christ in all persons, loving your neighbor as yourself? Will you strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being?” These familiar words from our Baptismal Covenant introduce the recent Racial Justice Audit of Episcopalians by The Episcopal Church nationally. The audit is but one part of Becoming Beloved Community efforts across The Episcopal Church.The Union of Black Episcopalians (UBE) has considered the principles of Becoming Beloved Community and how to “respond to racial injustice not so much [with] a set of programs as a journey, a set of interrelated commitments around which Episcopalians may organize our many efforts to respond to racial injustice and grow a community of reconcilers, justice-makers, and healers.” In response, they developed seventeen resolutions which will be submitted to the 80th General Convention in Baltimore (July 2022) by UBE. To read the resolutions and explanations, go to https://www.ube.org/Resources/black-deputies.html

At the time when our own efforts in Becoming Beloved Community in Delaware include the work of The Racial Justice & Reconciliation Commission (RJRC), it is appropriate for our convention to respond to a request from the UBE leadership. At its 53rd Annual Business Meeting this past July, UBE leadership called upon local chapters to take their part in impacting the diocesan and national church direction by using the UBE resolutions as a model for legislation that can be written for consideration by diocesan conventions.

​From the preamble of the RJRC: The Church cannot turn away from the events we have witnessed and the ugly truths that they reveal about racism in our country, our church, and ourselves. We will strive within ourselves and our church to recognize, understand, and confront our racism and to change to better reflect the love of God for each and all of us. We will strive to internalize our Baptismal Covenant so that our thoughts, words, and actions reflexively proclaim the good news of the Gospel. When we fall short in this work, which we will, we will have the courage to repent and try again. This is our work as disciples of Jesus. We in the Episcopal Church in Delaware commit ourselves and our resources to do this Holy work with God’s help.​Each individual resolution can be seen in full, along with the rationale supporting it, by visiting the UBE website as shown above.