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"Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd are our neighbors, as are those who have gone before them. Ahmaud Arbery was lynched by a retired police officer and his son while jogging in Brunswick, GA (2-23-2020). Breonna Taylor, a 26-year-old American emergency medical technician, was shot eight times by Louisville Metro Police Department officers who entered her apartment in Louisville, KY, while serving a "no-knock warrant" (3-13-2020). George Floyd was killed by police in Minneapolis, MN last night (5-25-2020) while begging for his life, only a block from one of our ELCA congregations, Calvary Lutheran Church. We declare that this is a sin, and that we, as a mostly white church, must repent of our history of racism, as well as our current biases.

In Matthew 22:37-39, Jesus [says]: "'Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."

As the European Descent Lutheran Association for Racial Justice (EDLARJ), we condemn the white supremacy that has led to the deaths of so many unarmed Black neighbors in our country. These lynchings are nothing new. We are weary of knowing we are complicit in these murders. But our weariness pales in comparison to the trauma of our Black Neighbors. We must, as a church, get to work on dismantling white supremacy. Our siblings are dying around us from our lack of willingness to truly repent of not loving our neighbors as ourselves.

In the comment section of this post are books you can read, websites you can visit, and tips for starting or deepening your own commitment to caring for our neighbors, as Jesus commands."