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Episcopal Diocese of Southern Virginia
11827 Canon Blvd., Suite 101
Newport News, VA 23606-3071
757-423-8287 Main
800-582-8292 Toll Free
757-595-0783 Fax

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The diocesan offices are open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Click here for directions to the diocesan office.

Justice & Advocacy Resources
Action alerts and other resources


Current Statements & Action Alerts

Presiding Bishop Curry’s Word to the Church: What Did Jesus Do? - "This November, the people of the United States will elect a president and many others to public office. This election occurs in a time of global pandemic, a time when there is hardship, sickness, suffering and death. But this election also occurs in a time of great divisions. Divisions that are deep, dangerous, and potentially injurious to democracy. So what is the role of the church in the context of an election being held in a time such as this? What is our role as individual followers of Jesus Christ committed to his way of love in such a time as this?" Click here to continue reading.

Prayer Pilgrimage for Black Lives Matter and Racial Equity - Hampton, September 26. Tidewater Sowers of Justice invite you to join Catholics and other people of faith as we journey across Hampton Roads to mark the 401st anniversary of the first documented Africans’ arrival in English-speaking America. 10:00 am: Prayer & Reflection at the 1619 Historical Marker at Old Point Comfort (near the gazebo at Fort Monroe). Then we caravan to - 11 a.m. Prayer & Reflection and Call to Action at the Emancipation Oak (at entrance to Hampton University). You are welcome to participate in all or either part of this pilgrimage as you are able. Please wear a face mask and adhere to CDC distancing guidelines. Questions? Contact McCarthyT44@ gmail.com.

Pastoral letter from Bishop Haynes on the death of George Floyd, June 1, 2020

A Letter from the Bishops of Province III of The Episcopal Church, June 4, 2020

A Word to the Church from Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, May 30, 2020

Recommendations for action, reading and listening in response to ongoing racialized killings and violence, structural racism and white privilege. (compiled by the Very Rev. John Rohrs, Dean of Convocation III)

White Fragility Book Study - When the Repairers of the Breach group originally announced plans to begin a book study of White Fragility by Robin J. DiAngelo we indicated that recordings of the Zoom gatherings would be made available. Our thought was to make the discussion experience widely available to the diocese. Unfortunately, we failed to realize that recording the gatherings might hinder meaningful discussion that the book inspires. As a result, we will not be sharing recordings of the book study discussions. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused. If you are reading the book individually, click here to download the reading guide to help you on your journey through the book. 

Thursday Conversations: Discussions to End Racism - St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Dallas, Oregon, invites you to join them for a series of 12-week conversations beginning Sept 17, 2020 entirely online. There is no cost to attend: everyone is welcome. The conversations will be a safe place to explore our thoughts about race. Attend one or all conversations.

Being the Church in the Time of COVID - Dean Kelly Brown Douglas of Episcopal Divinity School at Union offers a video series in which she interviews church, faith, and community leaders who are reacting and responding to justice issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Repairers of the Breach Speaker Series: “Unlawful for Any Christian”? Slave-owning Anglican and Episcopal Churches in Early Virginia - September 29, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. via Zoom.
Repairers of the Breach, our diocesan task force for dismantling racism, begins a speaker series on September 29 with a talk by Dr. Jennifer Oast, professor of history at Bloomsburg University. Continuing the work of Becoming Beloved Community, the Episcopal Church's long-term commitment to racial healing and justice, this series will build on the learning of our March pilgrimage, "Walking Toward Truth," which visited sites of memory in Hampton, Jamestown and Williamsburg. Dr. Oast, author of Institutional Slavery: Slaveholding Churches, Schools, Colleges, and Businesses in Virginia, 1680-1860 (Cambridge, 2016), has entitled her talk “Unlawful for Any Christian”? Slave-owning Anglican and Episcopal Churches in Early Virginia."  Anglican parishes were the first institutions in Virginia to own slaves, which were acquired initially through donations and later through deliberate purchase. The parishes became the masters of slaves with little hesitation; while one eighteenth-century minister declared he thought it was “unlawful for any Christian and in particular for a clergyman” to employ slaves, his view was the minority one in the early eighteenth century, when few Englishmen, either in the colonies or back in England, questioned the existence or morality of slavery. The Anglicans’ success with institutional slaveholding sent Virginians the message that not only was slaveholding not “unlawful” for a Christian, but that it could be of great benefit to them. This talk explores how slavery was used and thought about in Anglican and Episcopal parishes. It also examines the lives of individual African Americans who were enslaved to the churches. Join us via Zoom for this informative session on September 29th from 6:30-7:30. Click here to register and access the Zoom link. Program will be recorded and will be available on the Repairing the Breach page of the diocesan website after the event.

 

Resources

Racial Reconciliation

Repairing the Breach - A resource for exploring our history of racism in Southern Virginia

Becoming the Beloved Community - As the Episcopal branch of the Jesus Movement, we dream and work to foster Beloved Communities where all people may experience dignity and abundant life and see themselves and others as beloved children of God. The Becoming Beloved Community Vision Document and accompanying resources help us to understand and take up the long-term commitments necessary to form loving, liberating and life-giving relationships with each other. Together, we are growing as reconcilers, justice-makers, and healers in the name of Christ.

Sacred Ground - a film- and readings-based dialogue series on race, grounded in faith.  Small groups are invited to walk through chapters of America’s history of race and racism, while weaving in threads of family story, economic class, and political and regional identity. The 10-part series is built around a powerful online curriculum of documentary films and readings that focus on Indigenous, Black, Latino, and Asian/Pacific American histories as they intersect with European American histories.
Sacred Ground is part of Becoming Beloved Community, The Episcopal Church’s long-term commitment to racial healing, reconciliation, and justice in our personal lives, our ministries, and our society.  This series is open to all, and especially designed to help white people talk with other white people.  Participants are invited to peel away the layers that have contributed to the challenges and divides of the present day – all while grounded in our call to faith, hope and love.

The King Center, preparing global citizens to create a more just, humane and peaceful world using Dr. King’s nonviolent philosophy and methodology

Center for Racial Healing - Provides tools and experiences that allow faith communities - and the larger community of individuals - to engage in dismantling racism through prayer, dialogue, pilgrimage, and spiritual formation. 

Recommendations for action, reading and listening in response to ongoing racialized killings and violence, structural racism and white privilege. (compiled by the Very Rev. John Rohrs, Dean of Convocation III)

Resources For Adult Formation With An Emphasis On Race And Diversity from Building Faith

White Allyship 101: Resources to Get to Work, from the Dismantle Collective

It’s hard to understand antiracism without understanding what it means to be racist, Ibram X. Kendi panel discussion

Anti-racism resources for white people, Document compiled by Sarah Sophie Flicker, Alyssa Klein in May 2020.

75 Things White People Can Do for Racial Justice, by Corinne Shutack, published at Medium.com

The Work of the People - A spiritual visual library whose offerings include many excellent films and series on race and faith. They offer a number of FREE films for streaming and their videos can be streamed in Zoom gatherings (here's how to do that).

Racism: A curated list - an excellent gathering of resources for children, parents, youth, and adults

The Race Gap from Reuters Graphics provides an illustration of the gaps that exist on a number of fronts between black and white folks.
 

Public policy and advocacy

Episcopal Church Office of Government Relations - Find action alerts and resources on current legislation and policy issues.

Episcopal Public Policy Network - A grassroots network of Episcopalians across the country dedicated to carrying out the Baptismal Covenant call to "strive for justice and peace" through the active ministry of public policy advocacy.

Episcopal Church Office of Social Justice & Advocacy Engagement - The Office of Social Justice and Advocacy Engagement is responsible for engaging Episcopalians in building, resourcing, and empowering advocacy movements and networks for social justice at a local and community level by connecting, organizing, and mobilizing people in the pews, and people in the pulpit.  

Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy - The Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy advocates economic, social and environmental justice in Virginia’s policies and practices through education, prayer, and action.

Becoming a Sanctuary Congregation - Click here for a helpful article on the initial steps to take toward becoming a sanctuary congregation.
 

Ending Poverty

The Poor People’s Campaign - Uniting people across the country to challenge the evils of systemic racism, poverty, the war economy, ecological devastation and the nation’s distorted morality.

Coalition on Human Needs - The Coalition on Human Needs (CHN) is an alliance of national organizations working together to promote public policies which address the needs of low-income and other vulnerable populations.

Circle of Protection - Working to maintain a Circle of Protection around people struggling with hunger, poverty, and injustice.

Episcopal Health Ministries - Works to promote health ministry in Episcopal congregations, assisting them to reclaim the Gospel imperative of health and wholeness.
 

Human Rights

Episcopal Migration Ministries - Episcopal Migration Ministries (EMM) lives the call of welcome by supporting refugees, immigrants, and the communities that embrace them as they walk together in The Episcopal Church’s movement to create loving, liberating, and life-giving relationships rooted in compassion.

Episcopal Church Office of Government Relations: Migration, Refugees & Immigration - The Episcopal Church seeks to address issues of global migration and their root causes as the number of displaced people surpasses 70 million worldwide. We work to protect the human rights and safety of refugees by supporting the refugee resettlement work of Episcopal Migration Ministries. Further, we are committed to advocating for humane immigration policies that respect the dignity and worth of every human being and for comprehensive immigration reform.

Becoming a Sanctuary Congregation - Click here for a helpful article on the initial steps to take toward becoming a sanctuary congregation.

Episcopalians Against Human Trafficking - An online gathering place for Episcopalians & Friends Against Human Trafficking: Raising Awareness and Educating Our Communities Now.

TransEpiscopal - TransEpiscopal is a group of transgender and allied Episcopalians dedicated to fostering the full embrace of trans and nonbinary people, and our loved ones within The Episcopal Church and to inspiring faith-based advocacy for trans justice in the wider world.
 

Peacebuilding

Bishops United Against Gun Violence - Bishops United Against Gun Violence is a group of more than 80 Episcopal bishops working to curtail the epidemic of gun violence in the United States.
 

Creation Care

Creation Justice Ministries - Creation Justice Ministries (formerly the National Council of Churches Eco-Justice Program) represents the creation care and environmental justice policies of major Christian denominations throughout the United States. They work in cooperation with 38 national faith bodies including Protestant denominations and Orthodox communions as well as regional faith groups, and congregants to protect and restore God's Creation.

Cultivate: The Episcopal Food Movement - A growing network of Episcopalians cultivating resilient communities through the growing and sharing of food.

Eco-Justice Ministries - An independent, ecumenical agency that helps churches answer the call to care for all of God's creation, and develop ministries that are faithful, relevant and effective in working toward social justice and environmental sustainability.

Episcopal Ecological Network - A grassroots network of Episcopalians from around the United States, the EEN is helping the Episcopal Church, to advocate and articulate protection of the environment and preserving the sanctity of creation. This network extends throughout the various congregations, dioceses and Provinces of the Church and includes interaction with other Christian churches in the USA and around the world.

Episcopal Network for Animal Welfare - The Mission of the Episcopal Network for Animal Welfare is to create an inclusive and mutually supportive venue for Episcopal animal advocates with a variety of interests and gifts; and to offer our presence, passion, enthusiasm and resources to help equip the churches to give meaningful voice to every creature under Heaven, especially where neglect, cruelty, degradation and commercial exploitation are concerned.

Greenfaith - GreenFaith is an interfaith coalition for the environment that works with houses of worship, religious schools, and people of all faiths to help them become better environmental stewards.

Last Published: September 17, 2020 3:01 PM