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Confronting Racism: A Holy Yearning

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

As we continue to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ and ponder God’s unconditional love for us, may the new year bring you peace and renewed ways to listen and learn from one another.

I hope you will join me for another live webcast “Confronting Racism: A Holy Yearning” – Jan. 14 at 8 p.m. CST. This conversation will offer a variety of perspectives on the U.S. criminal justice system. As with the previous webcast, we will work from two commitments. One is this church’s proclamation of Christ and the confidence that this good news brings to set us all free from the captivity of racism. The second is this church’s enduring commitment to address the complexity of racism and end discrimination.

If you cannot tune in for the live broadcast, a recording will be available at www.ELCA.org/webcast.

If your congregation and members of the wider community plan to view the webcast together, consider these questions for conversation:

+ How has the criminal justice system intersected with your life?

+ What are some injustices that need to change in the criminal justice system?

+ There are many voices crying out. What story would you like to share that involve people in the criminal justice system – police officer, judge, family or others?

+ How is God’s justice wondrously richer and deeper than ours?

For deeper conversation and learning, download “Called to Hear” – the new ELCA study guide for this church’s social statement “The Church and Criminal Justice: Hearing the Cries.” You can access these resources and many others at www.ELCA.org/webcast. A guide for leading a conversation on race, ethnicity and culture is available there.

While many of you have held conversations about racism in your congregations and communities, view this video to see what our sisters and brothers in the ELCA South Carolina Synod are doing as an example of ways we can build new relationships, listen and learn from one another.

A live stream of the webcast will be available at www.ELCA.org/webcast and at www.Facebook.com/Lutherans. The hashtag is #ELCAConfrontRacism. If you would like to submit a question to be considered during the webcast, please send it to livinglutheran@elca.org and provide your name and your congregation’s name, city and state.

Again, join me for this important conversation.

God’s peace,

Elizabeth A. Eaton
Presiding Bishop