CARE & FARE
Commission on Antiracism and Equity (CARE) and Facilitators of Antiracism and Equity (FARE)
Given the history of the Presbytery of Chicago and the need for racial and justice work, CARE is charged to thoroughly, intentionally, and continuously assist the Presbytery of Chicago to root out and dismantle the evils of racism and white supremacy embedded in our structures and assist the presbytery to become a model for an inclusive, anti-racist, multicultural community free of all types of bias.
CARE is the Committee on Representation (COR) for the presbytery; therefore, this work will include all COR responsibilities.
THE WORK OF CARE
- Deepen our understanding that diversity is not about optics or even simply about representation and that homogeneity is unnatural, unhealthy and opposed to the gospel. Truly diverse communities are generative, creative, and reflective of God’s intent for creation.
- Make visible what is invisible and deepen our own self-understanding of the ways we all have been shaped and misshaped by white supremacy, individually, culturally, institutionally, historically, and contemporaneously.
- Deepen our understanding of our own (individual and corporate) complicity in maintaining white supremacy and cultivate spaces and opportunities for confession by naming the harms done.
- Build compassionate relationships that facilitate honest and courageous conversations about our racial identities and experiences.
- Attend to the intersections of oppressions where we and our communities are entangled. The ways that racism, patriarchy, misogyny, ableism, classism, and homophobia work in concert to create and sustain systems of dominance, particularly white dominance.
Identify the ways in which white congregations have benefited from generational wealth while communities of color have been left out of that inherited wealth by being denied financial and structural access, and advocate for the redistribution of resources (reparations).
- Be accountable to communities of color within the Presbytery of Chicago, answer to these communities and be responsible for the ways in which our institution uses its power.
- Work within the Chicago Presbytery, including commissions, committees, staff, and working groups, and in all realms and relationships: congregations, Presbytery Assembly, Synod, General Assembly, as well as our ecumenical relationships and our neighbors.
- Equip our congregations to do anti-racism and equity work within their own communities. Seek flourishing community where all are absolutely recognized as those created in the image of God, having unique and common dignity and worth.
As a commission, CARE is authorized to do this work by the Presbytery Assembly and carries the authority to do this work from deep within our Reformed tradition, which is informed by the Bible, our theology, our confessions, and our polity.
CARE is seeking new members to carry out its mission in the presbytery. Here is your invitation in this work:
The Presbytery of Chicago’s Commission on Antiracism Equity (CARE) reflects upon the book title: “A Tale of Two Cities” and its beginning line: “It was the best of times and the worst of times.”
In times like the ones in which we are living, it is an understatement to declare that there must be truth, accountability, and reconciliation before we as diverse peoples can live into anything resembling a beloved community. To this end, the Presbytery of Chicago’s Commission on Antiracism and Equity (CARE) presents with passion and excitement, a challenging opportunity for you to become a member of CARE. This commission is the culmination of previous years of intentional efforts toward the eradication of racism by honing in on its powerful roots. The members of CARE have laid groundwork for this current effort to reduce racial tensions and the spreading tentacles of systemic racism.
A well-equipped commission of 15-25 people will be a vital catalyst for real collaboration toward the Presbytery of Chicago making great strides in becoming an antiracist, multicultural institution. For the team to engage its most effective work, the Commission on Antiracism and Equity has developed criteria for members, according to the categories of social identification, institutional roles, and skills and experiences.
We are committed to continuing to build a diverse team, including people from multifaceted backgrounds and varied theological perspectives. We are seeking representation that is racially diverse, inclusive of multiple gender identities, sexual orientations and differently abled persons. See the CARE Member Position Overview.
One of the New Testament scriptures which call us to an unrelieved obligation to embrace this work is Galatians 3: 28: “There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus.” You may already know that God has called you — has equipped, empowered, and enabled you — to do this work.
We hope to hear from you through your application to join us in this endeavor. Here is a PDF version of the Application that you can complete, save under a different file name, and attach to an email. Or if you prefer, you can mail a hard copy to the Presbytery of Chicago, 815 W. Van Buren St., Suite 415, Chicago, Illinois 60607, ATTN CARE. Applications are received on an ongoing basis.
For questions, assistance with discernment, conversation partners, etc., please email us.
In Christ’s service,
Commission on Anti-Racism and Equity (CARE)
Robert Crouch and Alicia Reese, Co-Moderators
FARE’S PURPOSE STATEMENT
FARE, as a subgroup of CARE, will provide, customized for our presbytery context, Introduction to Systemic Racism Workshop, that will:
- Emphasize the biblical and theological foundation for anti-racism and equity.
- Provide a common language and understanding of systemic racism and white supremacy.
- Encourage individuals to do more self-educating and participating in further anti-racist training.
- Facilitate anti-racist systems and behaviors, interrupting and dismantling racism and white supremacy in our churches and Presbytery.