Race and Culture
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Why Work on Race and Culture?
The Missouri Conference wants to become a brave, empowering place for people from diverse cultures and generations so that we can become a Church for all God’s people.
We seek to do this by equipping Conference leaders and local churches for multicultural leadership, cross-cultural connection and healing justice.
THE CHANGE WE NEED TO MAKE
The recommendations in this report exist to further three central changes needed for the Missouri Annual Conference to thrive as a network and community that is pursuing healthy ethnic diversity, multicultural ministry and consistent and intentional efforts in dismantling racism within our networks.
1. Cultivate welcoming environments at Conference and congregational levels by providing training in cultural awareness and resources for Conference staff and local congregations.
2. Facilitate courageous conversations regarding the dismantling of racist theologies and practices within our midst.
3. Initiate and activate change in policies, practices, networking and recruiting strategies to allow for greater ethnic and cultural representation at the highest levels of leadership.
FOCUS AREAS AND KEY STRATEGIES
1. Build awareness around the concept of the Beloved Community and equip United Methodists in Missouri for intergenerational conversations on bias, racial justice and Jesus’s understanding of loving God and neighbor.
2. Build appreciation for the diversity of the Conference by sharing Black and Brown people’s stories and encounters with racism, as well as hopes and ideas for combating it.
3. Assess Conference attitudes around bias, culture, race and privilege to create a baseline for how the Conference is doing related to diversity and inclusion.
TRAINING AND ACCOUNTABILITY
4. Build a Conference-wide training plan for clergy and laity in the areas of intercultural competency, implicit bias, microaggressions and cultural blind spots.
5. Make diversity an integral part of the Missouri Conference mission, vision and expectations.
LEADERSHIP AND RECRUITMENT
6. Develop processes for the recruitment of leaders that demonstrates a high value on diversity and inclusion.
7. Prioritize diversity for Conference staff and the organization of Conference work.
8. Develop equity plans across Conference-funding arrangements.
- March 21, 2023 - Race and Culture Celebrations (based on Recommendations)
- November 15, 2022 - Race and Culture Celebrations (based on Recommendations)
- October 21, 2022 - Mission Council Celebrates Ongoing Race and Culture Work
- September 13, 2022 - Race and Culture Celebrations (based on Recommendations)
- March 22, 2022 - Race and Culture Celebrations (based on Recommendations)
- January 27, 2022 – Presentation of the Recommendations on Race and Culture
- November 1, 2021 - Mission Council Moves Race and Culture Work Forward
- October 11, 2021 - Land acknowledgement added to website (for a copy of the acknowledgement, visit this page or scroll to the bottom of the page)
- October - November 2021 - Discipleship Ministries conducts survey on racial attitudes and experiences in the Missouri Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church
- September – December 2021 – Cabinet and Mission Council works through preliminary report
- August 13, 2021 – Race and Culture Update
- May 27, 2021 – Race and Culture Report at 2021 Pre-Conference Briefing
- May 2021 – Task Force presents preliminary report to Bishop Farr
- January – April 2021 – Task Force Convenes
- January 25, 2021 – Episcopal Task Force on Race and Culture Named
- June 1, 2020 – Bishop Farr Expresses Outrage, Need to be Antiracist
- September 29, 2019 – BMCR Fifth Sunday Worship
- April 29, 2019 – Common Causes
- January 23, 2019 – Pan-Methodist Emancipation Proclamation Celebration
- April 23, 2018 – United Methodists Stand, Act to End Racism
- November 10, 2016 – Bishop Farr announces first three days of prayer and service
- October 10, 2016 – Bishop’s Call to Prayer: Invites Methodists to explore anti-racism as a way of living out social holiness
Local Church Stories
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Race and Culture Resources
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Check out the newest resources related to race and culture. For additional resources developed by the UMC General Commission on Race and Religion, visit the R2Hub.
A collection of resources from UMC-related sources.
The Mozambique Initiative supports access to healthcare in rural Mozambican communities through its mobile health clinics. Oftentimes, geographic distance makes basic health services inaccessible. Mobile health clinics reduce the distance between the community and its medical care. Closing this gap improves outcomes for pregnant women, children under five and those suffering from easily curable, yet potentially deadly, diseases. We’ve created resources, so you can share how mobile health clinics are improving lives with your church group. Access a one-page info sheet, shareable infographics and more.
Resources for engaging with Native American ministries, both in honor of Native American ministries special Sunday and beyond.