African American News and Genealogy

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Saturday, April 29, 2006

Moravians issue apology for church's role in slavery

Synod's resolution also signals start of reconciliation program By Mary Giunca JOURNAL REPORTER After much soul-searching about its tangled record on race relations, the Synod of the Moravian Church, Southern Province, has passed a resolution apologizing for the Moravian Church's participation in slavery. In addition to apologizing for slavery, the resolution announced the establishment of a racial-reconciliation program between black and white Moravian congregations and endorsed a mandate for the Provincial Elders' Conference to expand its efforts to eliminate institutional racism. "What it means to me is, it suggests our church's determination to live up to its creed," said the Rev. Wayne Burkette, the new president of the Provincial Elders' Conference of the Moravian Church, Southern Province. Burkette said that the resolution was passed unanimously on Friday with about 240 votes. Racial harmony has often been discussed at the synod, Burkette said, but he didn't know if a resolution had ever been discussed. Members of the social-concerns ministry group brought the resolution forward. Roma Combs, a member of the group that introduced the resolution, said that the resolution was the result of discussions among local Moravians who had participated in training at the Institute for Dismantling Racism. "I do think there's a gulf between the African-American and Caucasian folks in town," he said, "and we've got to move forward." Full Story:!localnews&s=1037645509099


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