I am grateful for having had the opportunity to share in the book review of Anxious to Talk About it. Honestly, I was not anxious for this opportunity as I participated in a study at my church of Waking Up White. On that occasion, I felt that the level of denial on the part of the participants hindered what could have been gained. On the positive side, however, it was an introduction to prepare the way for further work on white privilege, and I am grateful for the experience.
After reading this book, and really thinking about racism, I gave thought to what contribution I could possibly make in some area of my life that would address the sin of racism. I believe that that one of the major sins is that of whitewashing our history and that either passively or actively this has taken place in our biblical studies.
There is a strong presence of blacks in the testaments. However, one has to do their own homework to know the names and places of origin to recognize that presence. I have been doing that kind of reading and have discovered a very rich heritage. I plan to continue this work, as I believe that it will provide information that may help in eliminating this sin and certainly in providing a reason for repentance.
Erma Jones is the Search Committee chair on the Churchwide Board of Directors of Presbyterian Women, Inc., and a member of the Racial Equity Committee. She lives in Roswell, Georgia.