The purpose of the Commission is to set out a compelling agenda for change, in careful gospel-driven discernment, balancing the needs of individuals, communities, and society, maximising opportunities, and ensuring fairness for all. In order to understand why disparities exist, what works and what does not, the Commission is listening and learning from processes of participative engagement, and is considering detailed quantitative data and qualitative evidence, commissioning new research and inviting submissions where necessary and engaging with stakeholders and conversation partners across and beyond the Church.
The Commission is reporting to the Archbishops every six months during the three-year period 2021-2023, with recommendations to help the Archbishops fulfil their commitments to identify, respond to, and root out systemic racism in the Church, and our first report is available below.
Commenting on the first Report, the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Reverend Justin Welby, said: “We strongly welcome the first report of the Commission on Racial Justice and the clear, independent scrutiny it provides. I am very grateful to Lord Boateng and his Commission members for the work they have done so far. This report identifies the difficult and long path to eradicating the pain and injustice felt by so many, but provides us with hope that through the Commission’s work, these issues will be addressed.”
The Archbishop of York, the Most Reverend Stephen Cottrell added: “We are encouraged to see the work of the Commission in challenging current practice and stimulating culture change in the Church of England. It is important for us to engage with these ideas and continue to build both support and action. This reminds us that justice lies at the heart of the Gospels and it is our hope that the whole Church will be inspired to commit in earnest to this transformation.”
Second Biannual Report of the Archbishops' Commission for Racial Justice
In this, the second of the six reports the ACRJ will produce, we have reported on the work of the seven workstreams since the publication of the Spring 2022 report and on the progress of work on the five priority areas and the forty-seven recommendations identified in From Lament to Action.
Commission members and staff
The Commission reports to the Archbishops every six months during the three-year period, with recommendations to help the Archbishops fulfil their commitments to identify, respond to, and root out systemic racism in the Church.
The 11 Commission members, under the chairmanship of Lord Boateng, bring together a range of experience and expertise within and beyond the church. Members include specialists in areas such as Theology & Racial Justice; Ecclesiology & Liturgy; Formation & Theological Education and History & Politics.
Find out more about the commissioners and staff for the Racial Justice Commission.
37th Eric Symes Abbott Memorial Lecture
25 and 26 May 2023
Professor Anthony Reddie, Director of the Oxford Centre for Religion and Culture and a member of the Archbishops' Commission for Racial Justice, will deliver the Eric Symes Abbott Memorial Fund Lecture on 25 and 26 May 2023. He will be speaking on the topic of “From Black Theology to Black Lives Matter and Back Again” in Westminster Abbey on Thursday 25 May and at Keble College Oxford on Friday 26 May.
Book your free tickets (required) for the Westminster Abbey event.
2023 Conference I have a Dream: Deconstructing Racism in the Church
17-19 July 2023
The conference will explore the historical context of colonialism and its impact on our belief systems; contemporary challenges to power imbalances in theology and practice; representation of diversity in the structures of our life and faith; creative approaches to vocations, doing theology, and performing liturgy.
If you have any questions or would like to get in touch:
- Racial Justice Commission – [email protected]
- Racial Justice Directorate – [email protected]