Standing with Mother Emanuel AME, churches burned down: An invitation, liturgy

July 23, 2015

Many were devastated by the news of the murders at our sister church, Mother Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal in South Carolina, and equally devastated by the news that some predominantly black churches in the South were burned down.

A number of Minnesota United Methodist churches have been exploring ways to stand with the affected churches, and here are several ways to do that:

1. Rev. Elizabeth Macaulay of Christ UMC in Rochester wrote a moving liturgy that you’re invited to use (and adapt) in worship this summer while lighting a candle to remember the churches and families that have experienced loss. View liturgy 

2. AME leaders recently met in New Orleans and reaffirmed their commitment to move the nation to face, confront, and act on the issue of race. They have declared Sunday, Sept. 6 as a “Day of Confession, Repentance, Prayer, and Commitment to End Racism,” and they have invited their partners of other faiths to focus and preach on race that day. Learn more

3. During the most recent Pan Methodist Commission meeting, an idea was born to hold a gathering for persons of faith who want to keep working on ridding the church and the nation of racism. The historically African American churches are taking the strong organizing lead, but all the Pan Methodist churches are involved, including The United Methodist Church, The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, The Episcopal Church, The Christian Church/Disciples of Christ, The Moravian Church, and others. Churches can participate in "Liberty and Justice for All Day" on Sunday, Sept. 6 by using a prepared litany.  View litany

If you’re interested in donating to Mother Emanuel AME and/or the churches that were burned down, you may give to them directly or contact Rev. Laurie Boche of Hope UMC in Duluth (, who is coordinating a fundraiser and distribution. 

Related: Bishop Ough’s pastoral letter on Mother Emanuel AME shooting  / UMC resources for responding to violence

Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church

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(612) 870-0058