We continue our reflection on God’s call to us through the ELCA’s “60-Day Journey Toward Justice in a Culture of Gun Violence.”
DAY 38: Talking with Children and Youth about Race, Identity, and Diversity
“I don’t know the whole story, but I do know what I saw and heard through my kindergarten eyes and ears. I know what I learned from adults that day. And I know that it left an indelible mark and questions without satisfying answers. I can without a doubt remember the day in kindergarten when I realized that race was a thing that mattered and that I had one.”
This is the opening paragraph of “Paying Attention to Discomfort: Identity, Race, Culture, Class & Faith” by Deacon Claire Schoepp, posted October 26, 2018, by ELCA Racial Justice Ministries. Schoepp serves as director of child and family ministries at Luther Memorial Church of Chicago and as administrative assistant at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church of Logan Square.
As people of faith, we must pay attention to and ponder more deeply what makes us uneasy about race and human diversity so that we can move forward in addressing gun violence, racial and socioeconomic disparities, criminal justice reform, and building up caring, respectful neighborhoods and communities. In her blog post, Schoepp offers simple suggestions and resources for talking about race and diversity with children and youth.