Faith leaders and activists have been organizing for the last few years to create two national days of reparations for spiritual and faith communities, #ReparationSundays. The first #ReparationSunday was August 11th, 2019 and the second today December 22nd, which also falls on Jubilee Freedom Day. Jubilee Freedom Day remembers the 1864 liberation of more than 25,000 people from bondage when Civil War Union forces reached the coast of Georgia.
The Campaign FOR Truth and Reparations describes reparations as a spiritual practice that if adopted could mean a spiritual, political and social intervention to address the disastrous path of our nation and our planet. The possibility of an intervention is more clear when we consider the approach to reparations rooted in the UN definition of reparations involving the five separate dimensions: Restitution, Compensation, Satisfaction or Education, Healing (physical spiritual and mental), and Guarantees of Non-repeat. The Campaign FOR Truth & Reparations believes reparations in this sense require real change so that we do not continue the practices that allow us to continue racism in any form, whether it is explicit or hidden, direct violence, or the structural racism that financial systems in which everyday people are made complicit. This is why reparations must be a spiritual practice, not just a transaction. Once the check is cut, the acts of voter disenfranchisement or denial of mortgages cannot continue. Reparations must be understood as a moral and materal debt for slavery and the world it created.
Reparations are a relational practice of healing spiritual, moral, and material harm. Now more than ever we need healing, religious, spiritual, and faith communities to help lead and support this work. The second National Day of Reparations for Spiritual and Faith Communities began with a 20-day period of reflection and preparation from December 2, UN International Day for the Abolition of Slavery, and culminates today with Reparations Sunday on December 22, Jubilee Freedom Day. Similar to Juneteenth where we celebrate the end of slavery, the FOR Reparations campaign supports communities in their efforts by providing resources and education and by facilitating actual reparative relationships with Black-led organizations. Hundreds of people nationwide have registered to take part in Reparation Sunday. One such event will be the Multifaith Freedom celebration and a spiritually grounded call for reparations at the Stony Point Center, Stony Point NY. The celebration includes:
Rev. Weldon McWilliams IV, Senior Pastor, Christ Temple Baptist Church, Owl – Ramapough Lenape Nation, Click here to see more on the program.
FOR Truth & Reparations Campaign is a national effort led by the Fellowship of Reconciliation, the Truth Telling Project of Ferguson, Restorative Justice for Oakland Youth, the National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America, Community of Living Traditions at the Stony Point Center, Psychoanalysts for Social Responsibility, Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity, and others.On this day, we encourage you to offer prayers for true repair in our world, where healing the wounds of the past is the only way toward a more just future. Click here for faith based resources on reparations.
For further information, contact: the Campaign FOR Truth & Reparations at 314-301-9935