In its report Faithful and Equal of 1987, the Methodist Church defines racism as "allowing prejudice to determine the way power is used to the personal, social or institutional detriment of ethnic minority individuals or communities."
- What does the Church say about racism?
In a statement in 1978, to which it still holds today, the Methodist Church focused its attention on Christian Commitment to combat racism. The statement says:
"Racism is a sin and contrary to the imperatives of the Gospel. Biblically, it is against all that we perceive of the unmotivated, spontaneous and undiscriminating love of God who in Jesus Christ gave himself for all. As Christian people we believe that with the coming of Jesus Christ a new relationship was initiated between people of different origins." As St Paul says in his letter to the Ephesians (chapter 2 Verses 14-17): "For Christ himself has brought us peace by making Jews and Gentiles one people. With his own body he broke down the wall that separated them and kept them enemies … By means of the cross he united both races into one body …. So Christ came and preached the good news of peace to all…"
The statement continues: " We submit that racism exists, overtly and covertly, in our country, of which the Methodist Church is a part. It is of vital importance that the church should give an unmistakably clear lead as to where it stands in this matter. As an institution, which is an integral part of national life, it must continually be giving signs and signals declaring its abhorrence and utter rejection of this incipient evil."
Information about the journey to date, legal context, case studies and materials for further study and personal reflection, can be found in the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Toolkit.