"Racism is a sin which disfigures God’s image in us."

22nd April 2021

I support fully the recommendations published today in the far-reaching Report by the Archbishops’ Anti-Racism Task Force.

The Report, 'From Lament to Action', is both challenging and hopeful. It is clear that the Church of England is institutionally racist and that there have been decades of inaction. In its recommendations, we have a clear programme for change and a timetable for action for the church locally and nationally.

Reading the report was a stark reminder that the Church has fallen far short of the Christian Way and causes deep injustice and suffering. In lamenting and turning away from this sin, I am determined that racism will no longer be a part of the Christian church.

One of the most challenging and productive activities for me in the past year has been to be led forward by partners in the West Midlands time4change process, with its new commitment to The Birmingham Charter.

In Birmingham we are focussed on tackling this injustice and acknowledge there is much more to do. I look forward to engaging and acting with all colleagues in the Church of England and everyone across the city and region as we continue the journey to address and answer the issues.

Yours in Christ,

 

 

The Anglican Bishops in the West Midlands have together issued the following statement following the publication of the report today:

“Racism has no place in the Church of England, but we must face the fact that it still exists. As West Midlands bishops, meeting on Stephen Lawrence Day, we strongly affirm the work of the Archbishops’ Anti-Racism Taskforce and the report 'From Lament to Action' issued today. We acknowledge our part in past and present failures, and recognise the challenges it presents. We wholeheartedly support its recommendations, and look forward to taking them forward with energy and determination.”

From the Bishops of Hereford, Worcester, Gloucester, Lichfield, Birmingham, Stafford, Warwick, Aston, Dudley, Tewkesbury, Wolverhampton, Coventry, and Shrewsbury.

 

Read the Anti-Racism Task Force Report 'From Lament to Action', on the CofE website