Blog|The Rev. Kristin Saylor
Written by the Congregation Council
Updated Friday, May 21, 2021
In the month that has passed since this statement was written by the members of our Congregation Council, racist violence toward the AAPI community has tragically continued and, in some cases, escalated. We have seen vicious hate crimes on the streets of our own cities and are painfully aware that there are members of our community who fear for their safety when walking after dark.
At the same time, we find ourselves amid AAPI heritage month, when we celebrate the uniqueness and the many achievements of our Asian Pacific Islander siblings. Grief and joy can and do coexist together and, as the Body of Christ in the world, we are called to witness both.
At this pivotal moment in our common life, we, the members of the Congregation Council, reaffirm our unequivocal denunciation of all acts of hate and violence and our commitment to working together to build a society where all human beings feel safe, valued, and loved.
Across the country, there has been a dramatic increase in violence directed against people of Asian and Pacific Islander descent. While hate crimes and bigotry against Asian Americans are not a new phenomenon, the more recent mass shooting in the Atlanta area has brought national attention to the subject. Eight people were killed, and six of the seven women were of Asian descent. The victims, Xiaojie Tan, Daoyou Feng, Julie Park, Hyun Jung Grant, Yong A. Yue, Suncha Kim, Delaina Yaun and Paul Andre Michels remain in our prayers. Our hearts break with each additional news report of harassment, violence, and loss of loved ones in our communities.
We, the Congregation Council of Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, are committed to social justice. We stand strongly in solidarity with the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities to fight against increased hate and violence which spark fear in our communities and in our nation. More importantly, we strongly condemn microaggressions, white supremacy, xenophobia, misogyny as well as bullying and discrimination against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. And we mourn and pray for an end to hate crime and gun violence.
We understand that these acts of hatred have caused significant pain and fear in Asian American communities. We celebrate and stand behind the tremendous contributions of Asian Americans to this country, as well as their longstanding history as Americans, and commit ourselves to supporting one another. We will continue to use our platform to fight against injustice and discrimination. We encourage you to reach out to us whenever you need support and healing, to share your stories with us and others, and to continue to care for and love each other with the spirit of our faith.
Stop Asian Hate
Resources & Links to Support:
The Asian Pacific Fund is raising money for Bay Area community organizations working to combat anti-Asian racism.
PBS Documentary Series: The impact of Asian Americans on the country’s past, present, and Future.
Grace Cathedral: Dean Malcolm Clemens Young’s message.
Racial Justice at Grace Cathedral: Resources, contacts, statements.
Episcopal News Service: Episcopal Deputies of Color on increased violence against Asians and Pacific Islanders
Episcopal CEEP Network: “Anti-Asian Violence in Context.”