A Group Dialogue Series on Race & Faith
As a nation, and here in the Bay Area, we are experiencing profound challenges. At the unavoidable heart of most of these is a centuries old, deeply embedded history of racial injustice and inequity. To truly live into our vocations as Christians, Grace Cathedral believes that doing the work of dismantling this racism, both blatant and obscured, is vital.
Working Together to Create a Beloved Community
Our prayerful vision is that of a Beloved Community; a society based on justice, equality and love. It is in this spirit we are excited to offer a community-wide initiative, Sacred Ground, a faith-based dialogue series on racial justice and anti-racism designed by the Episcopal Church. Our hope is to create a bedrock of deeper understanding, empathy and action that supports, informs–and transforms all of Grace’s social justice work going forward.
Grace Cathedral thanks you for your interest in Sacred Ground and your commitment to racial justice. This dialogue series has reached capacity. Please add your name to the waitlist here. Together we’ll create new ways do this important work.
Sacred Ground: A Small Group Online Study Program
Sacred Ground is a small group curriculum, rooted in powerful documentary films and readings. The program invites participants 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 curriculum covers the historical experience of a diverse array of racial identities in the United States. More information on the program is available here.
We acknowledge that people of diverse racial identities have different life experiences with racism. For some, it is a daily lived experience. For others, it is more obfuscated and thus confusing or awkward to acknowledge. This disparity of experience translates to varied roles and responsibilities in understanding and dismantling the systemic racism in our society, its institutions and culture, including within the Episcopal Church.
We value and hope for racial and ethnic diversity within Grace’s first Sacred Ground program, especially so that we may practice actively listening to multiple stories and approaching dialogue from a multiracial and multicultural perspective.
We will form small, inclusive groups — “circles” — that represent the full diversity of Grace and our community. No matter where you are on your personal journey with racism, we encourage you to consider participating. While the work may not always be comfortable or easy, it will operate with firm values of mutual respect and inclusion. Further, the groups will be structured so that participants of color will not be expected to do the heavy lifting of “explaining” racism to white participants.
We are offering Sacred Ground as a Zoom-based program, beginning in January 2021. We will begin with an informational webinar on Sunday, January 31 from 2 to 3 p.m. Sacred Ground circles, led by a team of facilitators, will begin the week of February 2nd and will meet for 90 minutes every other week. Sacred Ground is a 10-session series, giving groups time to grow in relationship and cover terrain that cannot be traversed quickly. Committing to the process of being antiracist is a spiritually and emotionally demanding process. In order to build an environment of trust, where truth-telling and reconciliation can occur, commitment is crucial. Before signing up, please consider prayerfully whether you are able to commit to the full ten-week series at this time. If you would like to discuss your discernment around this decision further, feel free to reach out to the Rev. Kristin Saylor.
Our hope is that Sacred Ground will inspire our community to become more deeply involved in action around racial justice, long after the series ends. Making a commitment to the full 10 sessions is a powerful sign that we are engaging in what is actually a lifelong journey. Participants should expect to devote 2-3 hours to the assigned films and readings in between sessions.
Join Us on this Empowering Journey
This dialogue series has reached capacity, but we encourage you to sign up here to be included on the waitlist and to explore new opportunities to do this important work.