of exploitation and exclusion. Theyfocus our awareness on the unholyrelationship between our country’sastounding material achievements,and its excruciating moral failures.
They also call on us to help repairthe damage to the human family andto the Earth caused by centuries of ar
rogance, greed, and ignorance. Whileit can feel like it’s late in the day toheal so deep a wound as racism at thesystemic and personal level, it’s nevertoo late to do the right thing. =
RELATED ARTICLE: VocationNetwork.org,“Roll out the welcome mat.”
Challenging racism and white supremacy, whether in our hearts or in society, is a Christian imperative, and the cost of not facing these issues head onweighs much more heavily on those who live the reality of discrimination. . . .
If we are honest, racism is really about advancing, shoring up, and failing tooppose a system of white privilege and advantage based on skin color. Whenthis system begins to shape our public choices, structures our common life together, and becomes a tool of class, this is rightly called institutionalized racism.Action to build this system of hate and inaction to oppose its dismantling arewhat we rightly call white supremacy. . . .
Theologian Father Bryan Massingale has aptly named all of this soul sickness.Truly we suffer from a life-threatening case of hardening of the heart. . . .
The dehumanization of Indigenous and Blacks, and the displacement of theAmerican Indian meant that these communities were deprived of the narratives, land, and religious traditions that gave their life consistency and meaning.New racialized narratives for self-understanding were forced upon them andthey were forced to see themselves through the eyes of their masters. . . .
Every race and color and tribe and people and language and culture arethreads in the vibrant and diverse tapestry of the Reign of God. Our sufferingand pain and dispossession are transfigured in the Jesus who died on the Crossand who invites us to relocate our broken history, our imperfect lives, our desires and aspirations and our work for justice in the drama of His Reign which isunfolding all around us through the power of His Resurrection. But as buildersof the Temple of Justice here in the Americas, it is not enough to not be racist.Our reaction cannot be non-engagement. We must also make a commitmentto be anti-racists in active solidarity with the suffering and excluded. Dr. MartinLuther King, Jr. put it well when he said, “I can never be what I ought to be untilyou are what you ought to be, and you can never be what you ought to be untilI am what I ought to be.” . . . .
This is how we write a new chapter in our history of solidarity and friendshipthat future generations can remember with pride. This work of undoing racism and building a just society is holy, for it “contributes to the building of theuniversal city of God, which is the goal of the history of the human family.” Itanticipates that day when “night will be no more, nor will they need light fromlamp or sun, for the Lord God shall give them light, and they shall reign foreverand ever” (John 22: 5).