Black Lives Matter
As a benefice, we recognise that all are created equal by God.
We are actively praying for all those affected by prejudice following the death of George Floyd.
We are praying for the Black Lives Matter movement with a focus in the UK on prejudice and historical slavery.
We pray for everyone whose lives have been damaged by slavery or trafficking today.
We encourage and challenge each other to recognise prejudice and injustice in our own communities and thoughts.
Coming out of Lockdown, this has sparked off a wave of social unrest right across the world, and it has been striking that although George Floyd has been the inspiration, and has been honoured, the focus has been different in each country. In general protests in the UK have been peaceful, but the campaign has focussed on those who historically made their fortunes from slavery ….. rightly being seen as a huge injustice. It has got me thinking about slavery today – it would be great to think that slavery in the UK was abolished in 1834, and that since then we have been a slavery free country. The best we can say is that lawful slavery was abolished then, but unfortunately slavery has been an ongoing part of our economy ever since. The Joseph Rowntree foundation has done a great deal of work on the scope and range of slavery in the UK. It is a shocking fact but in April this year it was reported that the authorities knew of 10,000 modern slaves in the UK, but there may be more – equally shockingly, not all are adults – they work in the sex industry, beauty industry, building industry, agriculture, domestic work, industrial cleaning, washing cars, social and health care … … … they come from Eastern Europe, Asia, Africa … … … and the UK. Most of us will unwittingly benefit from the results of slavery as we go about our lives.
As Christians it is important that we recognise and fight injustice in our own communities. There are a number of ways we can help (1). Be aware and informed and tell others (2). Tell the authorities if you are concerned (3). Speak Up (4). Consume with a conscience. And most of all (5) do not brush it under the carpet. Finally, hold the victims of slavery and trafficking, or prejudice in this country in your prayers, pray for freedom and release from bondage.