Statement of Welcome
We recognize, celebrate, and give thanks for the many diverse gifts of God among us. We welcome persons of every race, language, age, gender identity, sexual orientation, physical and mental ability, national origin, immigration status, and economic level. We hold that discrimination is incompatible with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We affirm all relationships founded on the principles of God’s love and justice.
Statement of Purpose
Grace Memorial Episcopal Church, following in the way of Jesus, seeks to effect transformational change in individuals, in our Portland neighborhoods, and in other communities near and far. To do this we will engage our spiritual, human and financial resources in creative partnerships with people and organizations to further God’s work in the world.
Equity and Inclusion Policy
Response to Recent Attacks on Asian Americans
To read the Gospel while witnessing the rising violence against our country’s Asian community, the murders in Georgia on March 16th standing as a particularly horrifying example, is to see the face of Jesus in the people enduring this violence. Jesus says, “Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.” Earlier in scripture, at the very beginning of the Book of Genesis, we are promised that, “God created humankind in God’s image, in the image of God, God created them; male and female God created them.”
Scripture tells us, in other words, that Jesus was murdered in a spa on March 16th, 2021, that the image of God was desecrated on that day.
This would be anguish enough. But for the Christian, there is a second layer to our distress, and that is the knowledge that the perpetrator on March 16th was a Christian and that many other perpetrators of racist and misogynistic violence were and are Christians. Here are people engaging in hateful crimes in spite of their participation in church or – and this is a harder idea – in some cases because of their participation in church. Many of these crimes flow out of ideas that the perpetrators learned in their worshiping communities. These crimes represent a distorted understanding of God and a distorted response to God.
They are bad theology in action.
In response to these crimes, we, the people of Grace Memorial Episcopal Church:
- Renounce a theology in which God’s image is more fully realized in white bodies than in brown bodies, in men than in women.
- Embrace the promise that God sees humanity in our fullness and declares us to be very good. Renounce a theology in which women are responsible for the sexual frustrations, disappointments, and struggles of men.
- Embrace a savior who says, “Let anyone among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.”
- Renounce a theology in which sexual sin has a privileged or special status.
- Embrace a savior who heals, teaches, and eats with the poor, the exploited, and the forgotten.
- Renounce a theology in which justice or redemption can be found via violence.
- Embrace the law, summed up in a single commandment, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
On the cross, Jesus stands in radical solidarity with all those who suffer and endure injustice. In the imitation of Christ, we seek to do the same. We, the people of Grace Memorial Episcopal Church, Portland, Oregon stand, now and always, with our Asian American neighbors.