Reparations Listening Gatherings
Read the October 2022 report on the Reparations Listening Gatherings held in May here.
A Toolkit for Reparations in Community: A Resource for the Body of Christ
A Toolkit for Reparations in Community: A Resource for the Body of Christ has been developed by our diocesan Racial Justice Commission's Subcommittee on Reparations, as called for in the resolution "A Call for Repentance and Reparations" adopted by Diocesan Convention in 2020.
A Toolkit for Reparations in Community comprises several separate documents (linked below and also attached at the bottom of this page as PDFs):
- The Process Toward Reparations: A Template
- Reparations 101
- The Episcopal Church and Slavery: A Historical Narrative
- Reparations Resources and Suggested Reading
"What is Truth?: An Embodied Lenten Series"
- "What is Truth?" 2022 Lenten Series Introduction & Overview
- Session 1: Telling the Truth
- Session 2: Moving with Tension
- Session 3: Rooting in Relationship
- Session 4: Moving at the Speed of Trust
- Session 5: (Repair)ations
- Session 6: Building Resilience
Questions and feedback are welcome by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
This toolkit and its elements, like the journey toward reparations, are a work in progress, never completely done. The Subcommittee on Reparations looks forward to an ever-expanding circle of experiences and wisdom in its ongoing development.
"Charting the Long Road Toward Reparations"
Our 236th annual Diocesan Convention adopted the following resolution on Nov. 13, 2021:
Resolved, that the 236th Convention of the Diocese of Massachusetts, in recognition of and restitution for the sin and legacy of slavery, accepts and affirms the foundational principle as recommended by the Racial Justice Commission for the articulation of remedies; namely that, in the name of reparations, the Diocese of Massachusetts, its congregations and its Episcopal communities must take action to 1) change how we tell our own histories and present-day story, and 2) make financial compensation; and be it further
Resolved, that Convention, once again following the recommendations of the Racial Justice Commission, commits that 1) the Diocese of Massachusetts Reparations Fund to be established, as called for by the 235th Convention in November 2020, should give priority to making investments in long-term change and empowerment; 2) payments from such fund should be considered to both individuals and organizations; and 3) beyond these two broad principles, decision-making about the priorities for these investments and how they are distributed need to be in the hands of impacted individuals and communities in all parts of the diocese, according to a process developed by the Racial Justice Commission; and be it further
Resolved, that this Convention charges the Racial Justice Commission to assist in developing across the diocese a broadly accepted understanding of what actions to take in the name of reparations; and, using that shared understanding, create the means by which the descendants of enslaved Africans and their communities across and within the Diocese of Massachusetts will be empowered to develop funding priorities, funding strategies and decision-making structures in 2023 so that distribution of monies begins in 2024 from the Diocese of Massachusetts Reparations Fund; and be it further
Resolved, that this Convention directs Diocesan Council and invites the congregations, institutions and other Episcopal communities of the Diocese of Massachusetts to commit 2022 as a year of study, gathering stories, sharing and receiving these stories and discernment across the diocese – in the name of repentance, reconciliation and accountability to the descendants of enslaved Africans and their communities – in order to develop the broadly accepted understanding of what actions to take in the name of reparations; and be it further
Resolved, that this year of study, discussion and discernment calls forth those communities and organizations who have not yet taken up the invitation from the 235th Convention to explore their historic involvement in and present wealth derived from the forced labor of enslaved people to begin this work using the Toolkit for Reparations in Community, resources offered by the Reparations Subcommittee of the Racial Justice Commission and others; and be it further
Resolved, that this Convention directs the Racial Justice Commission, through its Reparations Subcommittee, to support the use of these tools and resources in communities across the diocese, by facilitating conversation and study across communities in the diocese, and by offering a study series for use in Lent 2022 to further this study, discernment and story-sharing, to the glory of God and as one means of living out our mission as a church, “to restore all people to unity with God and each other in Christ” (Book of Common Prayer, p. 855).