We invite you to join the ELCA Anti-Racism Pledge.

Peace Not Walls is the ELCA’s campaign for peace with justice in Israel and Palestine. It is crucial here that we talk about peace with justice. There is no peace without justice. A way of thinking about peace without justice is ‘negative peace’ – this just means that there is an absence of physical violence, but it does not address the structural and systemic elements of inequity that favor one group over another, structures that perpetuate gross disparities in access to healthcare, education, economic opportunity, and threatens people’s lives. A positive peace is when there is justice, when there is opportunity for reconciliation, when there are systems and structures in place that build positive relationships and seek to establish equity, where human dignity and human rights are centered. In the context of Palestine and Israel we are seeking a positive peace, peace with justice.

And in the same breathe we are seeking that same positive peace here in the US. Along with the ELCA, we condemn racism and white supremacy, and need to work to dismantle the systems that prop up ways of being and operating that threaten the lives of Black people in our country. Just as we are engaged with peace and justice work in Israel and Palestine and recognize the structural violence of the occupation, we need to interrogate the systems and structures in our own context that not only allow, but give life to racism, a racism that impacts our Black, Brown and Indigenous brothers and sisters on a daily basis. These struggles for peace and justice are connected.

As church we are called to confess the sin of racism, condemn the ideology of white supremacy, and strive for racial justice and peace. Beyond statements and prayers, we are called to also act and respond to injustices. We invite you to commit to one or more of the actions listed in the ELCA Anti-Racism Pledge.