ELCA Confronting Racism Webcast recording and resources available

If you were unable to watch the #ELCAConfrontRacism webcast, you can still watch it online here. There are good resources to consult after watching the conversation on the ELCA webcast site.

Please share the webcast and resources with your small groups, adult forums, church councils, and other gatherings.


Join ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton and William B. Horne II, an ELCA member from Clearwater, Fla., for a live webcast conversation on the complexity and implications of racism Aug. 6 at 8 p.m. (CDT).

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Through its social statement – “Freed in Christ: Race, Ethnicity, and Culture” – ELCA members have expressed this church’s calling to confront racism and advocate for justice and fairness for all people. The statement is grounded in the conviction that the church has been gathered together in the joyful freedom of the reign of God announced by and embodied in Jesus. That reign has not come in its fullness, but the message of God’s “yes” to the world breaks down all dividing walls as we live into that promise.

“Talking about race and racism is hard work for most of us,” says Horne. “Our Christian witness compels us to confront our sinfulness in all forms from within and outside of ourselves. It is more beneficial if we do it together.”

In several public statements, Eaton has called for deep conversations about racism and racial justice, particularly in response to several events in the United States.

“God’s intention for all humanity is that we see the intrinsic worth, dignity and value of all people. Racism undermines the promise of community and fractures authentic relationships with one another. We need to talk and we need to listen, but we also need to act,” says Eaton.

A link to the live webcast will be embedded on this page. A live stream also will be available at www.Facebook.com/Lutherans. Twitter hashtag is #ELCAConfrontRacism. A recording of the webcast will be made available here.

Interested in submitting a question for the ELCA presiding bishop to consider during the live webcast? Send your question to livinglutheran@elca.org. Please provide your name and your congregation’s name, city and state.

ELCA resources about this church’s ongoing racial justice work:

ELCA.org web pages:

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

The hard but undeniable fact of deeply embedded racism in American society has come to the fore in painful ways this past year through high-profile occurrences of racial discrimination, hatred and violence – including racially motivated killings. As Lutheran Christians, what should be our response and witness? As members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, how are we called to confront the sin of racism?

We need to talk and we need to listen, but we also need to act. As one important step in this process, I invite you to join me and William B. Horne II, an ELCA lay leader and member of the ELCA Church Council, for a live webcast conversation on the complexity and implications of racism on Thursday, Aug. 6, at 8 p.m. (CDT).

Through our church’s social statement – “Freed in Christ: Race, Ethnicity, and Culture” – the ELCA collectively has expressed its calling to confront racism and advocate for justice and fairness for all people. You can read this social statement here. In addition, I have made several public statements on behalf of the church recently on this subject. Those statements are available here.

God’s intention for all humanity is that we see the intrinsic worth, dignity and value of all people. Racism undermines the promise of community and fractures authentic relationships with one another. As Christians, though, we live in the conviction that the church has been gathered together in the joyful freedom of the reign of God announced by and embodied in Jesus. That reign has not come in its fullness, but the message of God’s “yes” to the world breaks down all dividing walls as we live into that promise.

I urge you to deepen your involvement in and commitment to this important work to which we all are called. I believe our live webcast on this topic on Aug. 6 is one useful way for us to pursue this together, and I hope you will view and take part in it.

If your congregation and members of the wider community plan to view the webcast together, consider having a conversation afterward about what you have heard. Here are some questions to help you get started:

  • What seems to be the role of racism in our faith life and/or our life together?
  • What did you learn from the webcast conversation?
  • What is the value of sharing and hearing one another’s stories of faith and cultural background? Can differences cause tension or division? How might they bring joy?
  • What next steps could we take?

You may read more about this webcast at www.ELCA.org/webcast, where a link to the live webcast will be embedded. A live stream also will be available at www.Facebook.com/Lutherans. Twitter hashtag is#ELCAConfrontRacism. If you would like to submit a question to be considered during the live webcast, please send it to livinglutheran@elca.org and provide your name and your congregation’s name, city and state.

Join me for this important conversation.

Your Sister in Christ,

The Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton
Presiding Bishop
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America