As leaders of ethnic ministries under Mission to North America (MNA) and members of the Ethnos Coalition*, we wish to express our grief and lament for the anguish and suffering of our African American brothers and sisters in regard to racial injustice, especially, at this moment, in regard to continued police misconduct and brutality.
We have no hesitation in saying that the lives of our brothers and sisters in this nation who are black, matter. They, as we, are created in the likeness and image of God. Within our churches and our denomination, we recognize that if Christ has redeemed us, we are well and truly of one family in Christ. We recognize that even if someone is not “saved” nonetheless they are still precious in the sight of God, they are our neighbors, and we are to love them as we love ourselves. This applies to people who are poor, uneducated, ex-convicts, addicts, and gang members as well as the educated, the academics, the businesspersons, and the wealthy.
As Christians, we are people of love and peace. The people that our coalition represents have all been hurt, at different times and places, from various kinds of discrimination, prejudice, social obstacles, economic challenges and neglect. Therefore, we do not lack empathy for what people are suffering nor do we intend to imply that there aren’t other issues of injustice in the world. This is a statement about this time, for this current concern about brutality and government misconduct. We are resolved to speak out in the face of the abuse and misuse of power as opposed to being silent waiting for this to “blow over.”
We are not making this statement to bring more division. Reconciliation does not come about by a determined blindness to social conditions. These are not political statements though political action may be a righteous response, if pursued in faith and truth, to bring about change. We intend this to be a statement of love and compassion. When our brothers and sisters in the PCA are affected, due to the color of their skin, by hatred or unjust treatment, then it is our cause as well as theirs.
We stand shoulder to shoulder with them in love, in sorrow, and in hurt. We also stand with them in faith and hope. We affirm the great Declaration “that all men are created equal.” We believe we can call authority to justice, to righteousness, and equity, without despising authority or failing to show them respect. We believe in the power of God to not only change human hearts but also to break yokes of oppression.
We denounce the minimizing of long-standing and deeply felt grievances, and especially the political backlash against voices of grief and anguish. We affirm that the Lord requires each of us to do justice, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with our God. We call on everyone to pray for God’s mercy on our Nation to forgive us for our sins, and the sins of racism in particular. We not only call for prayer for our American culture to be one of righteousness, equity, and justice, but we call for the renewed efforts of all our people to strive for those things that ought to define our nation. We pray for healing. We pray for the elevation of voices of compassion and unity, and to silence the voices of bitterness, hatred, racism, and violence, so that there may be peace so that the Gospel may be freely preached.
The Ethnos Coalition Ministry Coordinators & Directors collaborated on this statement:
Hernando Sáenz – Hispanic Ministries, (Chairman, Ethnos Coalition)
Jeb Bland – Native American/First Nations Ministries
Darcy Caires – Network of Portuguese Speaking Churches
Pat Hatch- Refugee and Immigrant Ministries
Alex Jun – Korean American Leadership Initiative
Randy Nabors – Urban and Mercy Ministries
Wy Plummer – African American Ministries
Bill Sim – Korean Ministries
Dony St. Germain – Haitian American Ministries
The Ethnos Coalition has no ecclesiastical or governing functions but is simply a collaborative effort to serve ethnic minorities, refugees and the urban poor with love, mercy and experience. It has become an advocate and – at this unique moment in time – a means by which mercy funds are being raised and distributed through ethnic minority churches whose members have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19.
*About the Ethnos Coalition
The Ethnos Coalition (EC) is a loving, learning, and serving collaborative community comprised of leaders of ethnic ministries under Mission to North America (MNA).