Last summer, the killings of Black men and women at the hands of police violence and white supremacy inspired in many a desire to work toward anti-racism and begin — or continue — down the path of social justice.
As the days grow shorter and colder, and Instagram feeds are no longer flooded with hashtags and renderings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery, those commitments might be beginning to slip away.
Instead of cycling into guilt and self-castigation, this is a good time to deepen our commitment to anti-racism. One way to get involved is to connect with a Catholic or Christian group that’s focused on racial justice. Here are resources, groups, and individuals who can help you on your journey toward anti-racism.
Catholics United for Black Lives
A new organization born in 2020, Catholics United for Black Lives (CUBL) focuses both on bringing the Catholic perspective to the Black Lives Matter movement and embracing diversity and justice in the Church at every level. Embracing Catholic Social Teaching, outreach, and action, CUBL states that they “hold to a consistent life ethic, and will work through direct action and evangelization to advance the dignity, sacredness, and value of every Black life from conception to natural death with no exceptions.”
Be the Bridge
Though not specifically Catholic, Be the Bridge is a solid Christian organization that works with organizations and people to help them see racial injustice and systemic inequality at work in the world. Be the Bridge seeks to form “bridge-builders” who are inspired and equipped to work toward racial reconciliation.
Ways to get involved: Be the Bridge has a full series of first steps to take when getting involved — from learning about your own implicit bias, to getting your organization involved, to partnering with Be a Bridge.
Ignatian Solidarity Network (Anti-racism Challenge)
If you’re looking for concrete steps to take to confront racism, consider the 21-day Ignatian Racial Equity Challenge. Committing to a habit for three weeks can help instill longer-term behavioral change, so the challenge involves an email sent to you each day with prompts under the categories of “learn,” “pray,” and “act” on a particular anti-racist or racial justice topic.
Jesuits West CORE
Created by the Jesuits West Community, the CORE Toolkit is a compilation of resources, actions, and events that work toward “the conversion of hearts and minds to the demands of love and justice, the work of truth and reconciliation, and the building of beloved communities of mutual belonging and universal kinship.”
Ways to get involved: Check out the toolkit’s resources, organized calls to action, and upcoming events.
National Black Catholic Congress
Founded in 1987, the National Black Catholic Congress represents all African American Catholics in the United States, working to make a just and inclusive space for Black Catholics nationwide. Every five years, the Congress — true to its name — holds a congress and compiles a plan of action.
While there are incredible organizations to join that can really help you grow in your work of anti-racism, one of the best opportunities to make racial justice part of your everyday life is to incorporate anti-racist individuals into your consciousness. Find people who inspire you and follow them on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook. You’ll learn about them, get connected to further anti-racist resources, and embrace diversity — all from your feed. A few of my favorite follows:
Host of the Morning Glory radio show, Purvis has spoken out about racism and social justice even as she’s faced backlash. Follow her to learn things you might not have heard in history class — or in Sunday school. Read what she had to say about Black Lives Matter and racism in the church earlier this year. Facebook | Twitter | Instagram
Living in Minnesota with her husband and quadruplet toddlers, Justina Kopp speaks openly and honestly about her experiences with racial injustice, plus what it’s like being in a Catholic, interracial marriage and raising four children at once. She also shares plenty of anti-racism resources along the way. Facebook | Twitter | Instagram
Leticia Ochoa Adams
A prominent speaker, podcaster, writer, and mother, Leticia Ochoa Adams doesn’t shy away from difficult topics or hard conversations. Follow her to learn about her consistent whole life ethic and how that means caring for our Black and Brown brothers and sisters. Facebook | Instagram
A spiritual writer who’s learned to embrace the power of weakness, Shannon Evans’s Instagram highlights include Black women theologians, Native American resources on the faith, artists who represent saints and biblical figures with an eye toward diversity, and more. Check out her feed, where you’ll find further resources and inspiration on living an anti-racist life. Facebook | Twitter | Instagram
This list of Christian, Black-life-affirming resources is nowhere near exhaustive — but it can also be overwhelming. My advice: pick one or two groups from the list above. Take a deep dive. Really get to know what they have to say, and make a commitment to yourself to do one thing to make your own world — and yourself — a little more just.
Because you’re the only person who can.
Special thanks to the women of Catholic Women Against Racism on Facebook, whose suggestions were included in this list.