Racial Healing and Justice

  • Prayer

    God of Heaven and Earth,
    you created the one human family
    and endowed each person with great dignity.

    Aid us, we pray, in overcoming the sin of racism. Grant us, your grace, in eliminating this blight from our hearts, our communities, our social and civil institutions.

    Fill our hearts with love for you and our neighbor so that we may work with you in healing our land from racial injustice.

    Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen

    From A Prayer Service
    for Racial Healing in Our Land (USCCB)

  • Examination of Conscience: A Look at Myself in the Mirror

    Conscience is the "core and sanctuary" within us where we are alone with God and hear his call to "love good and avoid evil" and "do this, shun that." Let us examine our conscience in light of the sin of racism, asking ourselves:

    1. Have I fully loved God and fully loved my neighbor as myself?

    2. Have I caused pain to others by my actions or my words that offended my brother or my sister?

    3. Have I done enough to inform myself about the sin of racism, its roots, and its historical and contemporary manifestations? Have I opened my heart to see how unequal access to economic opportunity, jobs, housing, and education on the basis of skin color, race, or ethnicity, has denied and continues to deny the equal dignity of others?

    4. Is there a root of racism within me that blurs my vision of who my neighbor is?

    5. Have I ever witnessed an occasion when someone "fell victim" to personal, institutional, systematic or social racism and I did or said nothing, leaving the victim to address their pain alone?

    6. Have I ever witnessed an occasion when someone "fell victim" to personal, institutional, systematic or social racism with me inflicting the pain, acting opposite of love of God and love of neighbor?

    7. Have I ever lifted up and aided a person who "fell victim" to personal, institutional, systematic or social racism and paid a price for extending mercy to the other? How did I react? Did my faith grow?  Am I willing to grow even more in faith through my actions?

    I recognize that racism manifests in my own individual thoughts, attitudes, actions, and inactions. It also manifests in social structures and unjust systems the perpetuate centuries of racial injustice.[4]  For my individual actions and my participation in unjust structures, I seek forgiveness and move towards reconciliation. I look into my heart and ask for the will and the strength to help contribute to the healing of racism in my time.

    From A Prayer Service for Racial Healing in Our Land (USCCB)