Racial Equity Initiative: Books to Read and Discuss Together
It can be a long process to understand the way our systems and structures prop up and cause racial inequality – especially for people who haven’t suffered directly and may even have benefited from these systems. One way to begin is by watching great movies and reading books that illustrate key aspects of systemic racism.
As part of Calvary’s Racial Equity Initiative (REI) to recognize and to educate ourselves about systemic racism and to explore the unconscious bias in our own hearts and minds, we offer a series of programs – books, movies, and speakers – to help promote discussion and understanding. Please join us.
Register/RSVP below to receive Zoom information to join the book launch and discussions.
Note: You do not need to have read the book prior to the introductory session. The introductory session will be followed by three weekly discussion groups; days and times TBD.
Between the World and Me is a letter written by gifted writer Ta-Nehisi Coates to his 15 year-old Black son, laying out his vision of what it’s like to live as a Black man in American society. Coates writes beautifully and with deep emotional power about his own experiences growing up in Baltimore, attending Howard University, and grappling with the police killing of a close friend. In eloquent, visceral prose, Coates describes the world that his son must navigate, one that includes entrenched racism and physical danger.
Toni Morrison has described Ta-Nehisi Coates as the intellectual heir to James Baldwin and calls Between the World and Me “required reading.” Between the World and Me won the National Book Award for nonfiction in 2015 and was a #1 New York Times bestseller. Coates has written several other best-selling books and is now a writer-in-residence at NYU. He is the recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship.
Calvary’s Racial Equity Initiative statement of purpose:
We recommit to recognizing and dismantling racism and unconscious bias in our own hearts and minds, in the institution of the church, and in the broader culture. We will provide a space to process what we are seeing and learning and to discern our call as a community of faith to take action toward these goals. Our shared set of values and mission calls us to transform lives for Christ: that now calls us to transform our own lives to be less complicit in racist aspects of our culture, to transform the lives of those who have historically faced oppression by helping eradicate systemic racism disproportionately affecting them, and to be the hands and feet of Christ by opposing institutions and practices everywhere that deny the full humanity of all God’s children.