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National Caucus of Korean Presbyterian Churches grieves with African American siblings

‘Silence is not an option’

by Gail Strange | Presbyterian News Service

“As we Korean Americans continue to cry out to the Almighty God to heal our land and to turn our nation back to our God,” the statement goes, “we also want to share our humble statement with our beloved brothers and sisters of the denomination to pray together, strengthen one another, and to rise up courageously against persistent racism in America.”

LOUISVILLE — Sparked by the deaths of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd and most recently Rayshard Brooks in Atlanta, protesters around the world have taken to the streets calling for police reform following the deaths of blacks at the hands of police officers. And while there have been some immediate policy changes, including the passing of “Breonna’s Law” banning no-knock warrants in Louisville, Kentucky, Brooks’ death reminds us that the battle for justice and equality for black Americans is far from over.

In a statement released by the National Caucus of Korean Presbyterian Churches, the organization has expressed its grief and anger over the senseless deaths of black Americans caused by ever-growing structural racism compounded by socio-economic disparity.

Noting that “Silence is not an option when hatred, strife and divisiveness instead of love, harmony and unity are openly condoned and even encouraged in opposite of all Jesus stood for,” the statement calls on Korean American congregations to lament and pray together. “More than that, we encourage them to stand in solidarity with communities of color and walk along with them.”

Acknowledging the relevance of the Matthew 25 invitation, the statement goes on the say, “As we strongly denounce rampant injustice in America, we are thankful for the bold vision of our national church to become a Matthew 25 church that embraces a timely focus of dismantling structural racism.” The statement ended by issuing a threefold call to action.

Read the full statement below:

미국장로교 한인교회 전국총회

National Caucus of Korean Presbyterian Churches, PC(USA)

nckpc@nckpcusa.org

June 13, 2020

“LET JUSTICE ROLL ON LIKE A RIVER”

(Amos 5:24)

We Korean American Presbyterians of the National Caucus of Presbyterian Churches (NCKPC), PC(USA) are deeply grieved and angered over the senseless deaths of Black Americans caused by ever-growing structural racism compounded by socio-economic disparity.

While we are grieving along with our African American sisters and brothers, we cannot just keep silent. Silence is not an option when the people of color are marginalized by the society and oppressed by police brutality. Silence is not an option when the political leaders in Washington including the President constantly advocated white supremacy and shamelessly disparaged the people of color. Silence is not an option when a church building and the Holy Bible is abused for partisan political purposes. Silence is not an option when they insist that there is no structural racism in America.  Silence is not an option when hatred, strife and divisiveness instead of love, harmony and unity are openly condoned and even   encouraged in opposite of all Jesus stood for.

We call on our Korean American congregations to lament and pray together. More than that, we encourage them to stand in solidarity with communities of color and walk along with them.  We exhort them to put on full armor of God to stand firm against the powers and principalities of this dark world (Eph. 6:11). Jesus confronted the violence and the powers of this dark world as he was unjustly executed on the cross. As people of the cross, we stand with the crucified. We stand seeking Christ’s costly justice and love.

As we strongly denounce rampant injustice in America, we are thankful for the bold vision of our national church to become a Matthew 25 church that embraces a timely focus of dismantling structural racism. What we need today are three folds: 1) Rise up and let our cry out of justice for all people roll down like waters into the streets of our community (Amos 5:24), 2) Rise up and let us be motivated by the love of God to join with Jesus Christ in his ongoing ministry of compassion to the hurt, to the marginalized, and to the oppressed as commanded by him, “Go and do likewise” (Luke 10:37), and 3) Rise up and let us reconcile and be peace makers by embracing and loving even enemies as Jesus commanded us, “Love your enemies” (Matthew 5:44).

Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

Faithfully yours,

Rev. Byeongho Choi

Moderator of National Caucus of Korean Presbyterian Churches, PC(USA)

The Presbyterian Churches (USA)


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