The Asian and Pacific Islander Association of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), has issued a statement addressing the increase in violence directed toward Asian American and Pacific Islander communities. The ELCA Conference of Bishops affirmed the statement during their virtual meeting. The statement is below.
On Sunday, March 21 we observe a day of lament against anti-Asian racism. We stand in solidarity with Asian and Pacific Islander Americans experiencing fear and trauma from the recent increase in violence. We offer our help and support to a community that has experienced a long history of anti-Asian bigotry and violence.
In the video on this page, members of the Association of Asians and Pacific-Islanders – ELCA share this "Embodied Blessing and Healing," part of the litany for the day of lament.
The statement follows:
The COVID-related surge in anti-Asian violence is physically and spiritually assaulting Asian American and Pacific Islander communities. This violence re-emerged from America’s historical and pervasive sin of racism. Asian American and Pacific Islander children and adults are facing assaults with racial slurs, bullying, spitting, physical injury, and even death. These are not new in communities where Peoples of Color live. These violent acts of racism have and are happening in cities and towns across the United States. The virus of racism cannot be allowed to run rampant.
We the Association of Asians and Pacific Islanders-ELCA call on our church to once again unequivocally denounce racism by taking immediate actions to defend, protect, and uphold the safety and lives of Asian Americans. 1 Corinthians 12 tells us that we are one body with many members. This member of the body is suffering. Let us bear this suffering together as one body.
We call on our church: