Cries for racial justice swept across the globe in the summer of 2020, emanating from the heart of our diocese. As faithful followers of Jesus, we at Saint Mark’s and in the Episcopal Church in Minnesota commit to joining the Spirit’s work of healing and liberation.

This will be lifelong work, including inner work as individuals, care examination together as a faith community, as well as prayerful examination of the interior work of the cathedral’s supporting ‘systems’. With God’s help, we step forward.

For additional information or to get involved, contact Mary Ramsbottom, current chair of RE&J coordinating team.

Becoming Beloved Community Where We Are:

Shared Conversations Toward Racial Equity & Justice  Jan-Feb 2022

BBC Session One Recording –  The Call to Beloved Community 

Small Group Questions for Session One

  • What resonated with you as key aspects of Beloved Community?  
  • How might the idea of Beloved Community be challenging to you, personally?  
  •  How might it be challenging to the Saint Mark’s faith community? 
  • When or where have you experienced a glimpse of Beloved Community?] 

BBC Session Two Recording –  We Gather as Beloved 

Small Group Questions for Session Two

  • What is something important to your identity that others may not see? 
  • When have you most strongly felt your identity as the Beloved of God?  
    •  [How did that affect your thoughts and behavior?] 
  • Bp Loya shares how daunting it is in midlife to realize he has not faced the complexity of his identity and personal narrative as a grandchild of Mexican immigrants.  
    • What do you know about your own ‘racialized’ or ethnic history? 
    • [How might knowing this bring you closer to understanding the Beloved Community?]   

BBC Session Three Recording – “Discovery” and Indigenous Voices

Small Group questions for Session Three

  • In just a word or two, how did you feel watching the first video?
  • How are we, individually and collectively, part of this story?
  • How has white cultural supremacy harmed you?

BBC Session Four Recording  – Whose “Amazing Grace” 

Small Group questions for Session Four

  • How often have you worshipped in a church where you were in the racial minority?
  • How might knowing more about African-American worship traditions enrich your worship experience?
  •  In “Intercultural Ministry,” Amy Butler writes:

 “…we are comfortable with people who look different from us, but what about people who worship differently?”

  •  “All are welcome!” at SMEC.
  •   What would SMEC feel and sound like if it was a “diverse worshiping faith community”?

BBC Session Five Recording – “Connecting and Witnessing.”

Small Group questions for Session Five

  •  Stephanie Spellers suggests that people drawn to the Episcopal church value “peace, propriety, and protection [security].”
    • Does this speak to you?
  • Where would you feel “risk” in being active in pursuit of racial justice and equity? Why?
  • What specific “next steps” do you find possible or compelling in this journey?

Updates from the Saint Mark’s Racial Equity & Justice Team

The team has spent the last several months deeply digesting the racial audit report’s findings and recommendations, and with the help of ECMN Missioner for Community Engagement and Saint Mark’s Cathedral member Rachel Babbitt, is now in the process of finalizing specific plans for us to embark on the most important work of our lifetime and the lifetime of our beloved Saint Mark’s Cathedral. These plans will be shared with the council and congregation in the coming months and will launch us into the next phase of our work, where there will be an invitation for everyone to join in and take part in concrete, hands on ways.  Stay tuned!

For More Information and to Become Involved

Please reach out to Mary Ramsbottom, current co-leader of the Saint Mark’s Racial Justice and Healing Team.

Racial Equity & Justice Resources

Past News from Saint Mark’s Racial Equity & Justice Team

Racial Equity & Justice Next Steps for ECMN, by Bishop Craig Loya, May 26, 2021

Becoming Beloved Community: Resources from The Episcopal Church

For those seeking book recommendations, here’s a start.  Consider buying your books at our cathedral bookshop:

    • Love is the Way: Holding on to Hope in Troubling Times, Presiding Bishop Michael Curry
    • I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness, Austin Channing Brown
    • So You Want to Talk About Race, Ijeoma Oluo
    • How to Be an Antiracist, Ibram X. Kendi
    • Between the World and Me, Ta-Nehisi Coates
    • The Fire Next Time, James Baldwin
    • White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism, Robin Diangelo