In 2016, after the death of Philando Castile, The Basilica recognized a need to address the important issue of racism in our parish, in our lives and in society. With the approval and support of the Parish Council, The Basilica began to prayerfully develop a parish-wide, faith filled-response to racism.
The Basilica began to bring people together to share stories and build trust across racial and ethnic divides. The Basilica engaged in ecumenical initiatives and offered educational series and trainings to learn about and address the issue of racial inequity.
As we sought to connect with and learn from community partners, The Basilica entered into an intentional relationship with equity consultant, Sarah Bellamy, in the Spring of 2019. Through small group conversations and workshops with staff and parishioners, Sarah Bellamy created a strategic and comprehensive report for The Basilica: The Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity Opportunities and Challenges Analysis.
Upon completion of this analysis and reflection and support by parish leadership, recommendations of the report are being implemented. A twelve member EDI (Equity, Diversity, and Inclusivity) Leadership Team comprised of parishioners began meeting September 2020. With guidance by Sarah Bellamy, this team is working on parish-wide strategies and goals within The Basilica and the larger community.
“We cannot tolerate or turn a blind eye to racism and exclusion in any form and yet claim to defend the sacredness of human life.”
-Pope Francis, reflecting on the killing of George Floyd
The Basilica of Saint Mary
Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) Position Statement
- Nurturing an environment within our parish that provides equity, diversity and inclusion for all through opportunities to engage in dialogue, education, and compassionate solidarity
- Identifying where institutionalized racism is in our parish while embracing an openness to reform our policies, practices, and procedures
- Providing opportunities for personal transformation, while working toward systemic change
- Working in collaboration with others in our community to deepen our impact both within our parish and within our larger community