The Church of England is apologizing for the racism they’ve enacted on “countless Black, Asian and minority ethnic people” over the past 70 years.
In a statement by General Synod, the church’s legislative body, they voted on Tuesday (February 11) to issue an official apology and commission an outside expert to prepare a report on racism, race and ethnicity in the church.
"We did not do justice in the past, we do not do justice now, and unless we are radical and decisive in this area in the future, we will still be having this conversation in 20 years time and still doing injustice," Justin Welby the Archbishop of Canter said in the statement, adding there was “no doubt” the Church of England was still “deeply institutionally racist.”
Welby was responding to a speech given by Reverend Andrew Moughtin-Mumby, a member of the synod who introduced the motion that called for the apology. He also described the horrid experiences of the family of Doreen Browne, one of his parishioners.
"Doreen's family suffered a horrible, humiliating racism which still affects Doreen's relationship with the Church even today," he said, adding that while the Browne family eventually found a parish church they were welcomed in, many who arrived from the Caribbean didn't and ended up leaving the church. "That is a scandal of our own," he said.
The church’s statement is in specific reference to the so-called Windrush generation, which is the first large group of migrants from the Caribbean to arrive in the UK post-World War II.
The British government had previously apologized for their treatment. "We have damaged the Church, we have damaged the image of God and most of all, we have damaged those we victimized, unconsciously very often," Welby said.
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