One in the Spirit is a diocesan wide initiative focused on increasing our capacity to expand relationships and deepen connections across differences in order to strengthen our shared commitment to follow Jesus.
A response to the increasing polarization and deepening divisions in our church, our nation and our world, it is committed to equipping us to recover our deep connection to each other and to our world so we can participate more fully in the transforming work of love.
- To live more fully into our baptismal promise to respect the dignity of every human being.
- To proclaim in Christ’s name that we will not submit to our era’s division and polarization.
- To feed hearts that are hungry for connection and community in a secularizing, isolating age.”
- To understand better how barriers of class, race, language, nationality, culture, politics, geography, orientation, and identification blind us to the image of the divine in one another.
- To choose not to choose between challenging systemic oppression in all its forms and respecting the dignity of every single human being.
- Expand our capacity as a diocese to expand relationships and deepen connections across differences in order to strengthen our shared commitment to follow Jesus.
- Compile and develop resources to increase connection to each other and our world, equipping us to more fully embrace the transforming power of God’s inclusive love.
- Create conversational communities to drive bridge building across the differences that simultaneously enrich and challenge us as a diverse, multi-cultural diocese, utilizing existing diocesan programs and resources as well as creating new ones
Sacred Ground — A ten-week film-based dialogue series on race and faith.
Sacred Ground is part of Becoming Beloved Community, The Episcopal Church’s long-term commitment to racial healing, reconciliation, and justice in our personal lives, our ministries, and our society. The 10-part everyone series is built around a powerful online curriculum of documentary films and readings that focus on Indigenous, Black, Latino, and Asian/Pacific American histories as they intersect with European American histories. During the sessions, small groups will be invited to walk through chapters of America’s history of race and racism while weaving in threads of family story, economic class, and political and regional identity.
The current offering of Sacred Ground is in progress and will conclude in mid-October. To register for the next offering of the Sacred Ground program, please register here. For more information contact Canon Susan Russell at firstname.lastname@example.org
From Many, One – An invitation into conversations across difference https://www.
Inspired by the Latin phrase on the U.S. seal – E Pluribus (“from many”) Unum (“one”) the campaign is designed to offer a faithful perspective and time-tested practice for knitting deeply divided communities into a diverse, more perfect union.
In a cultural moment shadowed by pandemic, fractious politics, and deep division within families, communities, and nations, one step we can take is to partner in simple ways to celebrate difference, listen with deep curiosity, and promote healing. In the words of Presiding Bishop Michael Curry: “Conversations with others across difference is not just a nice thing to do. It is a spiritual practice of love in action.”
“From Many, One” is designed to be simple and transformative. It is geared toward individual people talking to other individuals, starting with four simple questions: What do you love? What have you lost? Where does it hurt? What do you dream?
In Spirit & Truth: A Vision of Episcopal Worship – A five-week book study exploring essays on prayerbook and liturgical revision.
The Episcopal Church continues in the journey toward prayer book revision – an issue that will be very much front-and-center at the 80th General Convention in July 2022. In the words of Dr. Sylvia Sweeney, convener of the Anglican colloquium, North American Academy of Liturgy: “Effective formation involves providing needed information, engaging in dialog around issues that people are passionate about, and allowing experience coupled with conversation to form and perhaps reform perspectives, attitudes, and postures in worship.”
In anticipation and preparation for that important work, the Diocese of Los Angeles will host an online opportunity for engagement on issues of prayer book and liturgical revision – convened by members of our Bishop’s Liturgical Commission and the One in the Spirit initiative.
Discussions will be framed by “In Spirit & Truth” – a volume of essays offered as an invitation to “an open conversation about the direction our worship life will move in response to our current historical, social, and religious context.”
| The curriculum is still under construction. Stay tuned for publication date.
Love is the Way: A five-week book study curriculum
This online exploration of Bishop Michael Curry’s “Love is the Way” offers participants the opportunity to engage across geographical and congregational differences that challenge us while encouraging reflection on the love that binds us together; God’s love and the reflection of that love in human lives. Study guides are provided below, along with the video presentations from the Advent 2020 launch of the curriculum. A shareable playlist of all five sessions is available here – or watch the individual sessions below.
Racial Justice and Reconciliation
We are committed to the effort to compile and develop resources to increase connection to each other and our world, equipping us to more fully embrace the transforming power of God’s inclusive love” is part of the scope of work of One in the Spirit — our diocesan engagement across difference initiative.
At this moment in our history, there are no resources more crucial to that work than those which challenge, equip and empower us to dismantle the systemic racism that infects our nation, our church, and our world.
The Episcopal Church offers a list of resources for racial justice and reconciliation curated by members of the Presiding Bishop’s staff: www.episcopalchurch.org/racial-reconciliation/resources
The Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles provides links to active programs and resources on its Countering Racism, Building Community webpage: www.diocesela.org/countering-racism-building-community
In addition to these excellent sources for information and inspiration, One in the Spirit highlights and commends the following:
Articles & Essays:
- The Messy Business of Being White – Anna Olson
- More Than A Black Thing – Kim L. Coleman
- In This Moment – Heidi J. Kim
- Triple Threat — Adialyn Milien
- Speaking of Freedom: A Letter to The Episcopal Church – Kelly Brown Douglas,
Stephanie Spellers and Winnie Varghese
- America, Why Can’t You Stop Killing Us? – Stephanie Spellers [English/Español]
- Do We Want To Be White, or Do We Want To Be Church? – Kelly Brown Douglas
- Do You Really Want To Talk About Reparations? – Catherine Meeks [English/Español]
- Christ Beyond the Pale – Jemonde Taylor
- A Word to the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles – John Harvey Taylor
- For Such a Time as This – Nadia Bolz-Weber
- Dismantling Systemic Racism in the Episcopal Church – Alan Murray
- How to Be an Antiracist – Ibrahm X. Kendi
| Kendi takes readers through a widening circle of antiracist ideas—from the most basic
concepts to visionary possibilities—that will help readers see all forms of racism clearly,
understand their poisonous consequences, and work to oppose them in our systems
and in ourselves.
- The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness – Michelle
| A stunning account of the rebirth of a caste-like system in the United States, one that
has denied the very rights supposedly won in the Civil Rights Movement. Since its
publication in 2010, the book has appeared on the New York Times bestseller list for
more than a year — telling a truth our nation has been reluctant to face.
- So You Want To Talk About Race – Ijeoma Oluo
| Ijeoma Oluo guides readers of all races through subjects ranging from intersectionality
and affirmative action to "model minorities" in an attempt to make the seemingly impossible possible: honest conversations about race and racism, and how they infect almost every aspect of American life.
- I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness – Austin Channing Brown
| From a leading voice on racial justice, an eye-opening account of growing up Black,
Christian, and female that exposes how white America’s love affair with “diversity” so
often falls short of its ideals.
The Reverend Canon Susan Russell, Canon for Engagement Across Difference
email@example.com | 214.482.2040 ex. 223
Reverend Dr. Michelle Baker-Wright
Randall Day, Norma Guerra, Guan Luigi Gugiliemetto, Yein Kim, Brent Quines, Kay Sylvester, Fernando Valdes, Elizabeth Williams
Ms Rise Worthy-Deamer
Canon Suzanne Edwards-Acton
The Reverend Antonio Gallardo
The Reverend Norma Guerra
The Reverend Canon Dr. Gary Hall
The Reverend Peter Huang
Ms Karen James
Ms Wendy Lords
The Reverend Jennifer Wagner Pavia
The Rev. Canon Susan Russell, Canon for Engagement Across Difference, briefs Diocesan Convention on the new “One in the Spirit” initiative in November 2019 at Diocesan Convention.