Everyone in your church – leaders to laity, adults to children – can participate in the work of anti-racism. Use these books, DVDs, and online resources to involve everyone in creating an anti-racist church.
Keep reading to see recommended resources for:
- Small Groups
- Worship Team
- Anti-Racism Team
- Conversation Hosts
- Lifelong Learners
- Youth Ministry Leaders
- Parents & Children’s Ministry Leaders
Request These Resources
These resources can be borrowed for free by anyone involved with a United Methodist Church in the North Carolina Conference. We will mail them to your home! All you need to do is fill out the Resource Request Form.
Everyone who prays can participate in Discipleship Ministries’ Praying for Change: Daily Prayers for Anti-Racism. You can sign up to receive these prayers in email or view them on the website.
“Dismantling racism is not a short-term task but a lifelong moving forward to perfection in love—to use founder of the Methodist movement, John Wesley’s words . . . . The Worship Team of Discipleship Ministries believes, however, that such a change will not happen unless the whole process is bathed in prayer every step along the way. To that end, we will continue to provide daily prayers to help keep us all centered on the ongoing journey of transformation.”Discipleship Ministries of The United Methodist Church
Give these resources to your existing small groups, or start a new small group that will study racism by meeting people where they are. Are they skeptical of the need for this study? Do they wonder why the church is talking about this? Are they ready to take action?
Justice or Just Us? The Biblical Call to Confront Racism (DVD) by Rob Fuquay, Nicole Caldwell-Gross, and Jevon Caldwell-Gross. This DVD study helps you acknowledge the reality of racism in our world today, as well as our Christian responsibility to oppose it as individuals and together as the church.
Fear of the Other: No Fear in Love (DVD) by William H. Willimon. Willimon brings a non-technical, Wesleyan perspective to bear on what may be the hardest thing for people of faith to do: keeping and loving the Other as Other.
How to Fight Racism: Courageous Christianity and the Journey Toward Racial Justice (DVD) by Jemar Tisby. Tisby offers viewers an array of actionable items to help them become proactive initiators of racial justice. Tisby is also the author of another excellent DVD study for small groups, The Color of Compromise: The Truth about the American Church’s Complicity in Racism.
Dialogues On Race (DVD). Eight topics are packed with well-researched information but brought to life with the lived experience and stories of people at the center of the topic.
On This Spirit Walk: The Voices of Native American and Indigenous Peoples by Henrietta Mann and Anita Phillips. Discussion questions for multicultural groups are included at the end of each of the twelve essays by Native American United Methodist writers.
Race and Christianity in the United States (Online) by Sarah Ruble. Focusing on the history of black/white relations in the U.S., this video series considers how race and Christianity have interacted, for good and for ill. It offers a narrative that helps to answer the question, “how did we get here?”
There are many great resources that help preachers and lay speakers address racism from the pulpit. Learn from those who have gone before and pick up new skills and techniques for prophetic preaching.
Becoming Human: The Holy Spirit and the Rhetoric of Race by Luke A. Powery. Powery urges the church to live up to the inclusive story of Pentecost in its life of worship and ministry. He reviews ways that a theology and practice of preaching can more fully exemplify the diversity of gifts God gives to the church.
Who Lynched Willie Earle? Preaching to Confront Racism by Will Willimon. This book uses the true story of pastor Hawley Lynn’s 1947 sermon, a response to the last lynching in Greenville, South Carolina, to help pastors preach on race and violence in America, inviting and challenging the church to respond.
Preaching in the Midst of … How Black Preaching has Changed in the COVID-19 Pandemic by Amiri B. Hooker. A fierce challenge to rise up and embrace prophetic, transformative preaching, this book guides readers toward a new paradigm for bringing the gospel message with relevance, authority, and truth.
Blue Note Preaching in a Post-Soul World: Finding Hope in an Age of Despair by Otis Moss III. Moss beautifully and passionately brings to life biblical characters that speak to today’s pressing issues, including race discrimination and police brutality, while maintaining a strong message of hope.
How to Preach a Dangerous Sermon: Preaching and Moral Imagination by Frank A. Thomas. This book equips and empowers preachers to transcend their basic skills and techniques so that their proclamation of the Word causes actual turnaround in the hearts and lives of their hearers and in their communities.
The Preacher King: Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Word That Moved America by Richard Lischer. Here is a complex human being who, unlike any other preacher in living memory, never gave up trying to shape a congregation of people that would be capable of redeeming the moral and political character of a nation.
GCORR Real Talk: Preaching Courageously Against Racism (Online). In this video, Rev. Stephanie Vader, Rev. Kil Jae Park, Rev. Dr. Jay Williams, and Rev. Dr. Larry Pickens have a conversation about what it means to preach courageously against racism in our world today.
Multicultural worship offers new ways for your church to experience God’s presence. Use these resources to educate your congregation about different worship styles and expand your hospitality to other cultures.
A Worship Workbook: A Practical Guide for Extraordinary Liturgy by Gerald C. Liu & Khalia J. Williams. This book introduces crucial and under-examined liturgical and social concepts for students and leaders of worship.
Worship Together in Your Church as in Heaven by Josh Davis and Nikki Lerner. The authors offer an empathetic, step-by-step approach, providing readers with knowledge, skills, and strategies to successfully introduce inclusive, multicultural worship in any setting.
Worshiping with United Methodists: A Guide for Pastors and Church Leaders by Hoyt L. Hickman. This revision highlights the African-American contribution to UM worship, discusses at greater length what the various worship styles mean for us today, says more about the formative nature of worship, and includes updated resources.
Reflect Reclaim Rejoice: Preserving the Gift of Black Sacred Music (DVD). Filmed on location in Methodist churches where the oldest living African American music is still sung, viewers come to understand the key role that spirituals played in liberating a people who had little more than a song.
Fiesta Jubilosa: Recursos bilingües para la Adoración edited by Raquel Mora Martínez. This new fully bilingual worship resource collects works from 91 contributors and includes texts, original music, and arrangements for both Spanish and English-speaking worshippers.
For Everyone Born: Global Songs for an Emerging Church by Christopher Heckert and Jorge Lockward. This collection of twenty-three songs represents eighteen countries or people groups. It is accessible to all congregations, providing a diverse offering of songs that reflect the different moods and actions of worship.
The Pentecost Challenge (Online). Discipleship Ministries offers these liturgical resources for the church to decenter and dismantle whiteness, colonialism, and patriarchy in Christian worship.
Even if you don’t have a formal anti-racism team, the leadership of your church can use these resources to address anti-racism on a systemic level and consider how your church can become an anti-racist church.
I’m Black. I’m Christian. I’m Methodist. edited by Rudy Rasmus. Ten Black women and men explore life through the lens of compelling personal religious narratives.
When the Church Woke by William B. Lawrence. This book identifies the sin of racism in The UMC and offers an innovative look at the mission of the church based on biblical witnesses to new life with the resurrection. It offers proposals for reparations and renewal that will come when the church woke.
Wait – Is This Racist? A Guide to Becoming an Anti-Racist Church by Kerry Connelly with Bryana Clover and Josh Riddick. This book guides church leaders and staff through an examination of all aspects of church life, including leadership, preaching and liturgy, music, small groups, buildings and grounds, and more, to help churches create an action plan that will take them toward not only becoming anti-racist but also actually doing anti-racist work.
Reparations: A Plan for Churches by Peter Jarrett-Schell. This book is an introductory guide, a basic primer for pastors and congregation leaders who are wrestling with how to reach the ethnic groups next door and welcome them into the multi-ethnic body of Christ.
Called to Reconciliation: How the Church Can Model Justice, Diversity, and Inclusion by Jonathan C. Augustine. This book argues that the church’s work in reconciliation can serve as a model for society at large and that secular diversity and inclusion practices can benefit the church. It offers a prophetic call to pastors, church leaders, and students to recover reconciliation as the heart of the church’s message to a divided world.
There’s a Storm Comin’: How the American Church Can Lead Through Times of Racial Crisis by Harold Dorrell Briscoe Jr. Drawing from current sociological, psychological, and political research, Dorrell makes the case that the church must take proactive measures to prepare for racialized crises.
United Against Racism: Churches for Change by The National Council of the Churches in the USA. This resource aims to support churches, communions, and those who endeavor to share the journey of the Christian faith in the pursuit of an unfinished agenda to embody a more excellent way of racial equity.
Pentecost Journey: A Planning Guide for Non-Hispanic/Latino Congregations (DVD) by Marigene Chamberlain and Melanie Lee Carey. This resource is intended to help congregations, districts, and conferences fulfill Christ’s mandate to make disciples, with a particular focus on helping local churches understand issues related to developing a ministry with Hispanics/Latinos.
Use these resources to host a conversation in your church about racism. Begin with a workshop or start an ongoing series to get your church talking about the reality of racism in the church and our society.
Holding Up Your Corner: Talking about Race in Your Community (DVD) by F. Willis Johnson. This DVD study walks you through a self-directed process of determining what role your church can play in your specific community for racial justice.
Anxious to Talk About It: Helping White People Talk Faithfully About Racism by Carolyn B. Helsel. Helsel draws on her success with white congregations to offer insight and tools to embrace, explore and work through the anxious feelings that often arise in these hard conversations.
Brave Church: Tackling Tough Topics Together by Elizabeth Hagan. This book seeks to help readers create “brave spaces” in congregations and faith communities so that sharing stories and intentional listening can occur.
So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo. Perfectly positioned to bridge the gap between people of color and white Americans struggling with race complexities, Oluo answers the questions readers don’t dare ask and explains the concepts that continue to elude everyday Americans.
Fearless Dialogues: A New Movement for Justice by Gregory C. Ellison II. Ellison and his team create conversations among community members who have never spoken to one another, the goals of which are real, implementable, and lasting changes to the life of the community.
Traces of the Trade: A Story from the Deep North (DVD). Filmmaker Katrina Browne discovers that her New England ancestors were the largest slave-trading family in U.S. history. She and nine cousins retrace the Triangle Trade and gain powerful new perspectives on the black/white divide. A discussion guide can be downloaded.
Acting Against Racism: Conversation Guide (Online) by The Christian Century. This 14-page downloadable guide offers articles from the Century’s archives, study questions meant to spark thought and conversation, and specific action steps to pursue.
How To Have a Courageous Conversation (Online) by Discipleship Ministries. This booklet aims to help us engage conflicts in helpful, Christian ways that will move us beyond an impasse or give us the courage to manage a conversation we’d rather avoid.
Some members of your congregation may be ready to learn more about the history of race and culture in our country. These resources can be used in discussion groups or by individuals who want a deeper understanding of racial issues.
Who We Are: A Chronicle of Racism in America (DVD). Interweaving lectures, personal anecdotes, interviews, and shocking revelations, criminal defense/civil rights lawyer Jeffery Robinson draws a stark timeline of anti-Black racism in the United States, from slavery to the modern myth of a post-racial America.
Healing Haunted Histories: A Settler Discipleship of Decolonization by Elaine Enns and Ched Myers. Part memoir, part social, historical, and theological analysis, and part practical workbook, this process invites settler Christians (and other people of faith) into a discipleship of decolonization.
Brown Church: Five Centuries of Latina/o Social Justice, Theology, and Identity by Robert Chao Romero. For five hundred years, Latina/o culture and identity have been shaped by their challenges to the religious, socio-economic, and political status quo. Walking through this history of activism and faith, readers will discover that Latina/o Christians have a heart after God’s own.
Learning Our Names: Asian American Christians on Identity, Relationships, and Vocation by Sabrina S. Chan, Linson Daniel, E. David de Leon, and La Thao. A team from East Asian, Southeast Asian, and South Asian backgrounds explores what it means to learn our names and be seen by God. They encourage us to know our history, telling diverse stories of the Asian diaspora in America who have been shaped and misshaped by migration, culture, and faith.
Reconstructing the Gospel: Finding Freedom from Slaveholder Religion by Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove. Grappling seriously with troubling history and theology, Wilson-Hartgrove recovers the subversiveness of the gospel that sustained the church through centuries of slavery and oppression, from the civil rights era to the Black Lives Matter movement and beyond.
An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz. Dunbar-Ortiz offers a history of the United States told from the perspective of Indigenous peoples and reveals how Native Americans, for centuries, actively resisted expansion of the US empire.
Stand Your Ground: Black Bodies and the Justice of God by Kelly Brown Douglas. Douglas examines the myths and narratives underlying a “stand-your-ground” culture, taking seriously the social as well as the theological questions raised by this and similar events, from Ferguson, Missouri to Staten Island, New York.
Good* White Racist? Confronting Your Role in Racial Injustice by Kerry Connelly. Connelly exposes the ways white people participate in, benefit from, and unknowingly perpetuate racism despite their best “good person” intentions. This book unpacks the systems that maintain the status quo, keep white people comfortable and complicit, and perpetuate racism in the United States and elsewhere. Connelly also offers an online course on Deconstructing Whiteness.
Some of your church members may be ready to take action against racism. These resources offer concrete and practical steps to help groups and individuals affect change.
Subversive Witness: Scripture’s Call to Leverage Privilege (DVD Study) by Dominique DuBois Gilliard. By embodying Scripture’s subversive call to leverage–and at times forsake–privilege, you will learn to love your neighbors sacrificially, enact systemic change, and grow more Christlike as a citizen of God’s kingdom.
Silencing White Noise: Six Practices to Overcome Our Inaction on Race by Willie Dwayne Francois, III. Weaving together personal narrative, theology, and history, this book invites us to engage 6 “rhythms of reparative intercession.” These are six practices of anti-racism that aim to repair harm by speaking up and “acting up” on behalf of others.
Becoming Brave: Finding the Courage to Pursue Racial Justice Now by Brenda Salter McNeil. This book offers a distinctly Christian framework for addressing systemic injustice. It challenges Christians to be everyday activists who become brave enough to break the silence and work with others to dismantle systems of injustice and inequality.
Living Resistance: An Indigenous Vision for Seeking Wholeness Every Day by Kaitlin B. Curtice. Curtice shows that we can learn to practice embodied ways of belonging and connection to ourselves and one another through everyday practices, such as getting more in touch with our bodies, resting, and remembering our ancestors. She explores four “realms of resistance”–the personal, the communal, the ancestral, and the integral–and shows how these realms overlap and why all are needed for our liberation.
Color-Courageous Discipleship: Follow Jesus, Dismantle Racism, and Build Beloved Community by Michelle T. Sanchez. Grounded in the gospel, this practical and thought-provoking book reveals multiple ways that the racial dynamics of our society have already formed us, explores what it means to biblically and proactively address racial inequity for the sake of God’s glory, equips us to engage in challenging conversations about racial reconciliation with grace and truth, and offers hope, creative answers, and a path forward both individually and as beloved community. A youth version of this book is also available.
Straight White Male: A Faith-Based Guide to Deconstructing Your Privilege and Living with Integrity by Chris Furr. With an emphasis on confession and redemption, Furr invites other privileged men to reconsider the ways they live, work, believe, and interact with others. Alongside Furr’s perspective, essays from contributing writers who lack various types of privilege—straight, Black man William J. Barber II, straight, white woman Melissa Florer-Bixler, queer, nonbinary Latinx Robyn Henderson-Espinoza, and gay, white man Matthias Roberts—offer insights on how particular types and combinations of privilege (and the lack thereof) shape the way we move through the world.
Creating Change Together: A Toolkit for Faithful Civic Engagement (Online) by The General Board of Church & Society of The United Methodist Church. Within these pages, you will find the biblical and United Methodist grounding for civic engagement as well as strategies and tactics that you can do as an individual or group to pursue the common good.
30 Days of Anti-Racism (Online) by The General Commission on Religion and Race of The United Methodist Church. Engage in an activity each day that helps us become more anti-racist in how we think and act.
Being an Ally with People of Color (Online) by The General Commission on Religion and Race of The United Methodist Church. This video from the Vital Conversations series features Katelin Hansen, Director of Experiential Learning for the faith-based nonprofit, Community Development for All People, and Minister of Music for the United Methodist Church for All People, a multirace and multiclass church in Columbus, OH.
Every individual in your church can take steps in their own lives against racism. These resources share personal stories and encourage building communities that help to create a more just and compassionate world.
Individuals and small groups should also consider taking the online courses offered by The General Commission on Religion and Race. These self-paced courses include:
- Anti-Racism 101: Required Skills for White People Who Want to be Allies
- You Are Here: First Steps for White Christians on Race and Racism
- Implicit Bias: What We Don’t Think We Think
The Night is Long but Light Comes in the Morning: Meditations for Racial Healing by Catherine Meeks. With personal stories and thoughtful direction, Meeks takes the reader on the trajectory from self-awareness to recognition of the past, to a new and individual way forward. Meditation topics include how to work through fear and rage, how stories can help heal, honoring your ancestors while looking toward the future, what it really means to love one another, and the meaning of social justice.
Black & White: Disrupting Racism One Friendship at a Time by Teesha Hadra and John Hambrick. Authors Teesha Hadra, a young African American woman, and John Hambrick, a 60-year-old white man, use their story of friendship to show how racism can be disrupted when we risk forging friendships with those who do not look like us.
Becoming All Things: How Small Changes Lead to Lasting Connections Across Cultures by Michelle Ami Reyes. Reyes offers a poignant discussion on the challenges surrounding cross-cultural relationships in America today. She focuses on the concept of cultural accommodation in 1 Corinthians 9:19-23 and looks at the ways in which we need to adapt who we are in order to become all things to all people.
The Colors of Culture: The Beauty of Diverse Friendships by MelindaJoy Mingo. Through vivid stories spanning several countries, Mingo shows the beauty of diverse friendships in her life. She takes risks and learns from her mistakes, recognizing that relationships are worth the cost.
Faithful Friendships: Embracing Diversity in Christian Community by Dana L. Robert. Robert tells the stories of Christians who, despite or even because of difficult circumstances, experienced friendship with people unlike themselves as “God with us,” as exile, as testimony, and as celebration.
The God Who Sees: Immigrants, the Bible, and the Journey to Belong by Karen González. Immigration advocate Karen González recounts her family’s migration from the instability of Guatemala to making a new life in the United States. Here, too, is the sweeping epic of immigrants and refugees in Scripture.
Native: Identity, Belonging, and Rediscovering God by Kaitlin B. Curtice. As Curtice shares what it means to experience her faith through the lens of her Indigenous heritage, she reveals that a vibrant spirituality has its origins in identity, belonging, and a sense of place.
Biased: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice that Shapes What We See, Think, and Do by Jennifer L. Eberhardt. Eberhardt shows us how we can be vulnerable to bias but not doomed to live under its grip. Racial bias is a problem that we all have a role to play in solving.
Youth Ministry Leaders
These books provide youth and youth ministry leaders with the tools they need to fight racism in their youth group and in their daily lives.
Church in Color: Youth Ministry, Race, and the Theology of Martin Luther King Jr. by Montague R. Williams. Williams guides congregations to embrace a discipleship that recognizes, remembers, and wrestles with the realities of race, racism, and racial identity.
How to Be a (Young) Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi and Nic Stone. This book empowers teen readers to help create a more just society. Antiracism is a journey–and now young adults will have a map to carve their own path. A workbook is also available.
Color-Courageous Discipleship Student Edition: Follow Jesus, Dismantle Racism, and Build Beloved Community by Michelle T. Sanchez. Teens will discover a Christ-centered approach to antiracism that will empower them to be transformed as they transform their world—with end-of-chapter discussion questions for families and youth groups.
How to Fight Racism: A Guide to Standing up for Racial Justice: Young Reader’s Edition by Jemar Tisby with Josh Mosey. Tisby helps kids ages 8-12 understand how everyday prejudice affects them and what they can do to create social change.
Let Justice Roll Down: Young Reader’s Edition by John M. Perkins with Priscilla Perkins. Young readers will discover the transforming faith that allowed John Perkins to respond with miraculous compassion and become a leader of the Civil Rights Movement.
Walking in These White Man Shoes: Youth Explore Native America by Ray Buckley. This mission study includes narratives of the history of what is now the United States told from a Native American perspective. We also have a children’s version of this study, Creator Sang a Welcoming Song: Native America for Children.
Parents & Children’s Ministry Leaders
Parents and children’s ministry leaders can use these resources to talk with children about race, diversity, and multiculturalism in ways that they can understand and make a difference.
Raising White Kids: Bringing Up Children in a Racially Unjust America by Jennifer Harvey. This book helps parents, teachers, and churches enter into a dialogue about the impact of racism on our children and offers guidance for sharing our commitment to equity and justice.
The ABCs of Diversity: Helping Kids (and Ourselves!) Embrace Our Differences by Carolyn B. Helsel & Y. Joy Harris-Smith. This book includes specific resources and activities for younger and older children that parents and community leaders can employ to encourage compassion and empathy.
Hand in Hand: Helping Children Embrace Diversity by Faith Alive Christian Resources. Help children in grades K-6 learn to appreciate and celebrate the diversity in God’s family with this flexible five-session course.
The Gospel in Color: A Theology of Racial Reconciliation for Parents and Kids by Curtis A. Woods and Jarvis J. Williams. This set of books for parents and kids is written specifically to equip parents to provide their children with a biblical perspective on race and racism while celebrating the gospel’s power to bring about reconciliation.
Love in a Big World: Diversity and Social Justice by Tamara Fyke. This curriculum equips K-8 educators with a social-emotional learning (SEL) curriculum that is both research-based and practical. In efforts to embrace the diversity of today’s communities, we aim to equip all students with the ability to learn from one another’s unique experiences and engage in meaningful shared experiences together.
The Multicultural Game Book: More than 70 Traditional Games from 30 Countries by Louise Orlando. These games are not complicated and do not require special equipment. Country of origin and a history of the game is included.
Crafts of Many Cultures: 30 Authentic Craft Projects From Around the World by Aurelia Gomez. Crafts are a universal language of cultural expression. The country of origin and a description of the craft is included with directions. We also have The Kids’ Multicultural Art Book: Arts & Craft Experiences from Around the World.
Deep Blue Life: Faith and Culture—Anti-Racism (Online) by Cokesbury Kids. This downloadable curriculum offers three sessions teaching about “Prejudice and Stereotypes,” “Curiosity and Empathy,” and “Colors and Cultures.”
These stories can be read or viewed by children to help them learn about the concept of race and our shared racial history.
An American Story by Kwame Alexander. A picture book in verse that threads together past and present to explore the legacy of slavery during a classroom lesson.
Creator Sang a Welcoming Song: Native America for Children by Ray Buckley. This 4-session mission study includes narratives of the history of what is now the United States told from a Native American perspective, telling the story of events that unfolded out of the clash of Native and immigrant cultures with their competing ideologies, religious practices, and spiritual lifestyles.
The Harriet Tubman Story (DVD). Discover how Harriet followed God, became the Moses of her people, and persevered despite seemingly insurmountable obstacles in this latest episode of The Torchlighters.
The Beatitudes: From Slavery to Civil Rights by Carole Boston Weatherford. The Beatitudes — from Jesus’ famous Sermon on the Mount — form the backdrop for Carole Boston Weatherford’s powerful free-verse poem that traces the African American journey from slavery to civil rights.
Luis y Mia / Mia and Luis by Mónica Reyna and L.J. Zimmerman. This flip-over book for ages 6-9 tells the story of a cross-cultural friendship from each child’s perspective. Both stories are in English and Spanish.
All the Colors of the Earth by Sheila Hamanaka. Inspired by her own two children’s multi-ethnic heritage, Hamanaka uses soaring text and beautiful art to celebrate the glorious diversity of children laughing, loving, and glowing with life.
God Makes Us Different by Helen Caswell. Despite differences in personality and physical traits, all people are the same in many important ways. This picture book shows young readers that even though we are different, all of us are beautiful and special in God’s eyes.
Don’t Forget: A Video Book for Kids about Racism and the Kingdom of God (Online) by Leanne Hadley. United Methodist Pastor Leanne Hadley offers this online video book and three-session curriculum.
The NC Conference Media Center has many more resources on anti-racism. You can find these highlighted on our Anti-Racism Resources page and a complete list in our Anti-Racism pathfinder.
Request These Resources
These resources can be borrowed for free by anyone involved with a United Methodist Church in the North Carolina Conference. We will mail them to your home! All you need to do is fill out the Resource Request Form.
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