Racial justice

It is not the job of the minority population to advocate for the minority population. Image: James Eades on Unsplash.The time is right to bring the UKME community into sharper focus within the Church.

In February 2021, the diocese welcomed its first Racial Justice Adviser, the Revd Polly Falconer, strengthening its resolve to encourage, support and promote UKME vocations, participation and representation at all levels across the diocese. Find out more about Polly and her role.

Racism exists in the Church of England. We need every person in every church and every school to root it out. Read more about From Lament to Action, the Church of England Anti-Racism Taskforce report.

Covenant for Racial Justice in the Diocese of Oxford

We believe that:

  • God is the Creator of all people, and all are God’s children in one family;
  • In our common humanity, all women and men are made in God’s image, and all persons are equally valuable in the sight of God;
  • Racism goes against the teachings of Jesus Christ;
  • By stereotyping and excluding others who are not like us (due to racism), we deny the full display of God’s creation, deprive them and ourselves of his gift, and cannot be a full body of Christ. 
  • Racism is often used as a justification for social, economic, environmental and political exploitation;
  • Our strength lies in our racial and cultural diversity and that we must work toward a world in which each person’s value is respected and nurtured;
  • Our struggle for justice must be founded on unbiassed attitudes, better understandings and healthy relationships, and must be reflected in our governance, structures, policies and practices of every church body in the diocese.

We commit ourselves as individuals and as a community to:

  • to defend and advocate the rights and the self-determination of every person and group of persons.

Therefore, as members of this diocese, we will unite our efforts within the church to take the following actions:

  • Eliminate all forms of institutional racism in the total ministry of the church, giving special attention to those institutions that we support, beginning with their employment policies, purchasing practices, environmental policies and availability of services and facilities;
  • Create opportunities in local churches to deal honestly with the existing racist attitudes and social distance between members, deepening the Christian commitment to be the church where all racial groups and economic classes come together;
  • Increase efforts to recruit people of all races in our paid and voluntary roles;
  • Provide leadership development opportunities without discrimination;
  • Establish workshops and seminars in parishes to study, understand and appreciate the historical and cultural contributions of each race to the church and community;
  • Raise the awareness of the continuing need to address social and racial justice ensuring equality, diversity and inclusion at all levels for all people;
  • Work in partnership to support and participate in the worldwide struggle for equity in church and community;
  • Facilitate nomination and election processes that include all racial groups by employing a system that actively promotes leadership opportunities of communities that are underrepresented as the result of the ongoing legacy of racial injustice.

Intercultural Mission Conference 2023

This one-day conference was for those leading churches and parishes with significant UK minority ethnic/global majority heritage populations to explore the challenges and opportunities for intercultural mission in the Anglican Church.

The conference was led and hosted by St Pauls, Slough - the designated intercultural mission resourcing hub in the Diocese of Oxford - with seminars on various aspects of intercultural mission and resolutions on championing intercultural worshipping communities.

This conference provided an opportunity for those leading churches and parishes with significant UKME/GMH populations to share best practices, learn and mentor each other in intercultural ministry. Watch a recording of the event here:

Race Equality Week and Racial Justice Sunday 

Racial Justice Sunday began in 1995 and is observed by Christians on the second Sunday of February each year. It moved from September in 2017 and now marks the end of Race Equality Week (5-11 February 2024).

It is an opportunity to:

  • Give thanks for human diversity.
  • Pray for an end to misunderstanding, racism and injustice.
  • Take positive action that can truly make a difference.
  • Fundraise for local and national racial justice initiatives.
  • These resources help churches to hold a dedicated service to mark our commitment to racial justice. The service sheet can be adapted and the Bible passages are just a few that relate to social justice, with some particularly focused on loving others as ourselves.

For more information or a half-day workshop on racial justice and racial bias, please contact the Revd Polly Falconer our Racial Justice Adviser.

What did young people have to say about race equality in 2023? Polly visited Aylesbury Vale Academy to find out and had a great conversation - have a watch and share it with the young people in your life. You can also download the video here.

See all our Race Equality Week resources.

Black History Month

In 2024, Black History Month will run from Tuesday 1 October to Thursday 31 October. Find out more about events and activities that took place in 2023. 

Find out more


Headshot of the Revd Canon Janet Binns.UKME Chapter

The UKME Chapter offers pastoral support to ordained clergy and licensed lay ministers (LLMs) with a license to officiate within the Diocese of Oxford, through making space for corporate prayer, seeking to hold ourselves and our ministries before God.

The Chapter is not a campaigning forum; however, it will seek to advocate for the UKME community in matters that concern us and/or the communities we represent, particularly on issues of equality, diversity, and inclusion. 

More about the UKME Chapter


UKME resources

Whether you're just starting on a journey of discovery into Black theology or whether you're looking to go deeper, find a growing list of resources.


Intercultural Mission and Ministry Resourcing Hub

St Paul’s Slough is the intercultural mission and ministry resourcing hub church in the Diocese of Oxford.

Through online training, mentoring and sharing, they aim to nurture and grow effective intercultural mission and ministry across the diocese. They support diocesan efforts to create a culture change and address barriers to ethnic minority lay and ordained persons' participation, representation and progression in mission and ministry.

The hub aims to assist the diocesan UKME Development Enabler to realise an increase in ethnic minority lay and ordained ministry enquiries leading to licensing and ordination. Read about intercultural mission and ministry at St Paul's Church, Slough. 


Headshot of the Revd Polly Falconer.The Revd Polly Falconer

Racial Justice Adviser


More about Polly

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