Religion & Race

The Eastern PA Conference Commission on Religion and Race strives to further the UMC General Commission’s mission and vision in our region and context.  We see the creation of learning opportunities, the dissemination of resources and the communication of continued dialogues, trainings and workshops, sponsored by other entities throughout the conference, as the scope of our work.

Conference Commission on Religion and Race
  • Co-chairpersons: Rev. Susan L. Worrell and Rev Alicia Julia-Stanley

Racial groups speak out against racist oppression, violence

Three racial groups in the Eastern PA Conference have released anti-racism advocacy statements calling for an end to systemic oppression and violence against Black U.S. citizens, especially by police officers. The statements—by Philadelphia Black Methodists for Church Renewal (BMCR), the Latino Commission and the Whites Confronting Racism Clergy Cohort—follow an earlier one issued on May 13 by the conference’s Commission on Religion and Race, “Enough Is Enough! A Call to Address Racism and Racial Violence.”

Philadelphia BMCR members discussed in a Zoom video-conference meeting on Monday, June 15, “where we are and what we should be doing as Black Methodists when the dust settles.”

“BMCR Philadelphia stands in solidarity with the families of all of the unarmed black brothers and sisters who have been targeted unjustly and even killed at the hands of police,” wrote the Rev. Eric Carr, Coordinator, in his invitation to the meeting. Read more…

Northeastern Jurisdiction Call to Action Resolution & Response

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A statement presented to the Northeastern Jurisdictional Conference July 13, 2016, Lancaster PA

An Advocacy Statement by the Commission on Religion and Race
Eastern Pennsylvania Conference of The United Methodist Church

Co-chairpersons: the Rev. Susan Worrell and the Rev. Alicia Julia-Stanley

May 13, 2020

 View and Download this Statement as a PDF
Enough Is Enough! A Call to Address Racism and Racial Violence

As the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference Commission on Religion and Race, we stand firmly in support of the joint statement released May 8, 2020, by the United Methodist Church’s General Commission on Religion and Race and General Board of Church and Society regarding the abhorrent miscarriage of justice in the vigilante shooting death of young Ahmaud Arbery. (See statement here.) This is yet one more attack and murder, one more lynching in a disgustingly long history of white supremacist violence against people of color in our society. The uncaring delay of law enforcement in charging and arresting the assailants is no less egregious.

We stand in solidarity with our responding general agencies, but today we also declare solidarity with all our neighbors, friends, colleagues, families, churches and communities of color who consistently endure hardship, oppression and terror based solely on their skin color and racial-ethnic origins. We cannot accept these actions as merely “the way things are.”  We must put our faith into action and stand against injustice. Read more…

NEW Resource Alert! GCORR presents a free online course Implicit Bias: What We Don’t Think We Think

We know many of you have downloaded and used the Implicit Bias Workbook. This popular resource is now available as a free on-demand online course designed for you to take at your own pace. 

By taking an intentional look at implicit bias, learning what it is and the ways it works in our brains and in our actions, we can question perceptions and break down the barriers to reaching full inclusion, diversity, equity, and community.

We invite pastors, teachers, and anyone who is interested in learning and teaching others about implicit bias to take this course.

Enroll in the course

EPAUMC Commission on Religion and Race Resources

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General Commission on Religion and Race (GCORR) website
  • Racial Justice Conversation Guide [PDF] – This article is presented by GCORR, culled from the resources available on their website at Please use and share this information as a follow-up to the Bishop’s request for action in response to the crisis and tension existing in our country and communities as a result of recent shootings.

A Charter for Racial Justice

A Statement and Call to Respond to Racism in Our Current Political Discourse

Do you accept the freedom and power God gives you to resist evil, injustice and oppression in whatever forms they present themselves? I do.

“The Renunciation of Sin” is a fundamental promise in The United Methodist Church’s covenant of baptism and membership vows.

Stoking racist fears and slandering sisters and brothers of color are indeed evil sins that we are called to resist. Are we, as a nation, not better than this? Are we, who profess to be disciples of Jesus Christ and followers of his teachings, not better than this? And should we not demand more civility and fair-minded integrity of our elected leaders—especially of one whose responsibility is to represent the cherished values of our nation on behalf of all Americans?

Continue reading…

Religion & Race Events
Conversations on Racial Justice

ChangingRacismFall2015 (2)Southwest District Voices for Racial Justice

Lay and clergy members meet regularly in various district churches to engage in guided interracial dialogue and discovery about race, racism, racial justice and race relations. Open to all, including people of other districts. Come join us!  For more information or to kindly let us know you’re coming, please contact the Rev. Jason Perkowski at or (717) 333-9238.

UM Church of the Open Door Conversations on Race

(210 S. Broad St, Kennett Square, PA) participates in and often hosts periodic Conversations on Race in the Kennett Square Area, sponsored by its I.S.M.S. (Inclusive Social Ministry for Solidarity) ministry. Some of those conversations involve reactions to TED Talks on topics of race and culture. These are opportunities for people to gather and develop relationships of trust, have conversations about topics that matter, and seek means of changing ‘what is’ to ‘what should be’. Locations may vary. Visit the I.S.M.S. webpage or the I.S.M.S Facebook page.

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