North Carolina Church Offers ‘Racists Anonymous’ 12-Step Program to Help People Overcome Racist Tendencies

(PHOTO: REV. NATHAN KING) A sign for Racists Anonymous group at Trinity United Church of Christ in Concord, North Carolina.
(PHOTO: REV. NATHAN KING)
A sign for Racists Anonymous group at Trinity United Church of Christ in Concord, North Carolina.

A North Carolina church is offering a program called “Racists Anonymous” that helps people overcome racist tendencies by using a 12-step program similar to how “Alcoholics Anonymous” treats those working to overcome substance abuse.

Trinity United Church of Christ of Concord, an LGBT-affirming congregation, started the program in late July and has held five meetings since then, averaging out about a dozen attendees of varying races and genders.

The Rev. Nathan King, lead pastor of Trinity UCC since 2001, told The Christian Post that their program was modeled off of another Racists Anonymous group that meets at Congregational United Church of Christ in Sunnyvale, California.

“We began it because we recognized our participation in a system of discrimination against people of color and we seek to be more consciously aware of our internalized prejudices so we can change our behavior,” explained King.

“This is how we move the conversation forward and love more fully. Racism is a spiritual disease. In biblical terms it is sin. The 12-steps offer hope for turning that over to the care of a higher power.”

King also told CP that the Racists Anonymous program is complimentary of his church’s longstanding commitment to social justice causes.

“With the past two years of high profile gunning down of black men in Ferguson, Baltimore, New York, Cleveland, Charlotte, Fairfax, Charleston, to name a few, hopelessness was settling into our prayers,” continued King.

“We grieved. We prayed. We cried. We were wondering where and how it would finally end. We wondered if it would ever get better. It was clear racism was alive and growing.”

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SOURCE: The Christian Post
Michael Gryboski