Standing with the AAPI Community
Dear Old South Church,
In the wake of the recent murders of innocent people of Asian descent in the city of Atlanta, Old South Church in Boston states unequivocally that racism, and racist violence are an affront to God, a violation of this nation's highest ideals, and sin of the most atrocious kind. People of Color, including Asian and Pacific Islander people, are part of the beautiful diversity of God’s good creation.
Hate incidents and crimes against Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders have risen sharply in recent years. Stop AAPI Hate received reports of 3,292 incidents in 2020—and these are only the incidents that have been reported. Recent demonization of and violence towards Asian and Pacific Islander People in the US is partly a result of political rhetoric erroneously blaming Asian people for Covid-19, but in fact has been a part of the history of the United States for centuries. Long-standing racist ideas about Asians as “other” are deeply embedded in the national consciousness. These stereotypes fuel current discrimination. It is incumbent upon all citizens of this land of the free and the brave to reflect on how stereotypes subtly shape unconscious bias or even outright hatred and violence. At Old South Church we are convicted by our faith -- and by God’s call to love our neighbors -- to fight hatred and racism in all its forms. We stand in solidarity with our Asian congregants, neighbors and friends.
We call upon every American to speak up and speak out. Silence is deadly.
To our AAPI church members, friends, neighbors and fellow citizens we say: We love you! You are not alone.
Prejudice and hatred are not only wrong, they can be deadly. They not only harm the victims, but the very fabric of our society. The answer is not hatred in return, but it is a call to work against all forms of hate speech and violence, and to build communities where all are treated with dignity and respect. We ask you to join us in this work. Our friends at New York’s Middle Collegiate Church have prepared a variety of valuable resources to stand up against racism towards Asian/Pacific Islander people. We also invite you to join a State-wide Community Town Hall on March 25, 2021 6pm-7:30pm to highlight how the Asian American community in Massachusetts is organizing against racism and to discuss how to support the AAPI community during the pandemic. RSVP at bit.ly/townhallaar.
Let us join in prayer for the families of those who were murdered in Atlanta, and for others of Asian descent experiencing racist violence and hatred. We resolve to do all in our power to eliminate the prejudices that plague our society, and to promote safety, dignity, peace, and justice for all people.