Seeking Racial Reconciliation and Justice in Multiracial, Evangelical Churches of Washington, DC



Grant, Anna Laura

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This thesis explores how multiracial churches in Washington, DC engage in racial reconciliation and justice within their congregations and local community. The Christian faith has been used justify racism and oppression throughout the history of the USA. Furthermore, continued levels of segregation in churches and problematic understandings of race and reconciliation complicate the possibility for religious racial reconciliation. Washington, DC provides the ideal setting for investigating these challenges. Four pastors of multiracial churches within the city were interviewed in-depth. The three major findings included a process and theory of reconciliation, the understanding that faith can be expressed as justice in a place, and the framework that diverse community is essential for true faith. The theory of reconciliation includes an awareness of harm, lament, confession/apology/repentance, reparations, forgiveness, and transformation. The implications for churches include implementing acts of reparations, confronting White cultural normativity, and centering of marginalized voices as essential to reconciliation.



Racial reconciliation, Evangelical Christian, Reparations, Racial justice, Washington, DC, Multiracial churches