Anti-racism initiative

Made in God's Image: Pray and Work the End the Sin of Racism

In light of current events in our country and the need for ongoing work in the fight against racial injustice everywhere, Cardinal Gregory has announced the new Archdiocese of Washington initiative ‘Made in God’s Image: Pray and Work to End the Sin of Racism (CCC 1935).’

This initiative will include a wide range of pastoral activities and outreach including prayer, listening sessions, faith formation opportunities and social justice work.

Please join Cardinal Gregory, our auxiliary bishops, clergy, and staff as we pray and work together to proclaim Christ’s love for all people and work for justice for all.



Prayer Cards

This family prayer for justice and human dignity, available in several languages, was written by Cardinal Gregory and the auxiliary bishops of the Archdiocese of Washington.

English  |  Spanish  |  French  | Chinese  | Vietnamese  | Portuguese


Mass on the Feast of St. Peter Claver and Day of Prayer and Fasting for Racial Justice

To commemorate the feast day of St. Peter Claver, a missionary saint who advocated for the dignity of enslaved people, the Archdiocese of Washington and Cardinal Wilton Gregory participated in a day of prayer and fasting for racial justice on September 9. This comes after Bishop Shelton J. Fabre of Houma-Thibodaux, chairman of the USCCB’s Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism, urged a day of prayer and fasting in response to racial and societal unrest in the country.

Cardinal Gregory celebrated a special noon Mass at St. Peter Claver Catholic Church in St. Inigoes, Maryland.  Click here to view the replay of the Mass and to download a prayer card with a prayer for justice and human dignity written by Cardinal Gregory and the auxiliary bishops of the archdiocese.



Webinars on Racism

Public Dialogue on Racism in Our Streets and Structures

On June 5, the Initiative on Catholic Social Thought and Public Life at Georgetown University hosted a Public Dialogue on Racism in Our Streets and Structures: A Test of Faith, A Crisis for Our Nation with Cardinal Gregory.

Cardinal Gregory’s Online Discussion with the American Jewish Committee

On June 30, Cardinal Gregory discussed the role faith can play in overcoming racial injustice during an online discussion with the American Jewish Committee (AJC).

Introductory Statement from Cardinal Gregory’s discussion with Notre Dame students

On August 21, Cardinal Gregory participated in a discussion in an anti-racism course with students at Notre Dame University.

ADW Office of Catechesis Webinar on Racism Resources

On November 24, in support of the ADW anti-racism initiative – Made in God’s Image: Work and Pray to End the Sin of Racism – the Office for Catechesis developed a catechetical resource packet for adults, youth and children.

Anti-Racism Webinar with Bishop Roy Campbell and Bishop Mario Dorsonville

On January 11, the auxiliary bishops of the Archdiocese of Washington participated in a dialogue on ongoing efforts to work and pray to end the sin of racism.


USCCB Combatting Racism – Statements and Letters

Blog Posts

Say Their Names by Stephanie A. T. Jacobe PH. D.

Black Voices Series from Catholic Standard and Office of Communications

Black Catholic Voices series: Cardinal Wilton Gregory reflects on racism in society and the Church and the drive for racial justice. Catholic Standard Article, October 30, 2020

Black Catholic Voices series: Dr. Ansel Augustine, executive director for Cultural Diversity and Outreach for Archdiocese of Washington. Catholic Standard Article, November 6, 2020

Black Catholic Voices series: Bishop Roy Campbell Jr. reflects on his journey of faith and experiences with racism. Catholic Standard Article, November 15, 2020

Black Catholic Voices series: African priest who led racial justice march reflects on impact of racism and COVID-19. Catholic Standard Article November 21, 2020

Black Catholic Voices: At 100, St. Luke’s ‘heartbeat’ reflects on a life of faith. Catholic Standard Article November 30, 2020

Black Catholic Voices series: Msgr. East on his roots of faith, combating racism, and what gives him hope. Catholic Standard Article December 9, 2020

Black Catholic Voices series Newsfeed

Town Hall Events

Town Hall on Police Reform (Archdiocese of Washington) – October 6, 2020

Open Wide Our Hearts

cross image with text reading "open wide our hearts"Open Wide Our Hearts: The Enduring Call to Love is a pastoral letter from the full body of the bishops of the United States to the lay faithful and all people of goodwill addressing the evil of racism.

The pastoral letter asks us to recall that we are all brothers and sisters, all equally made in the image of God. Because we all bear the image of God, racism is above all a moral and theological problem that manifests institutionally and systematically. Only a deep individual conversion of heart, which then multiplies, will compel change and reform in our institutions and society. It is imperative to confront racism’s root causes and the injustice it produces. The love of God binds us together. This same love should overflow into our relationships with all people. The conversions needed to overcome racism require a deep encounter with the living God in the person of Christ who can heal all division.

Sister Thea’s presentation to the US Bishops

Message from Sister Thea Bowman

NCR Resources

NCR Anti Racism Reading List

NFCYM Resources

NFCYM: Anti Racism Resources

NFCYM: Four Courageous Conversations About Racism and Violence in America Final Participant Worksheet

NFCYM: Talking Race with Youth

NFCYM: Youth Ministry Resources Combating Racism

NFCYM: Webinar – Open Wide Our Hearts

USCCB Resources

USCCB Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism

USCCB Combatting Racism – Articles

USCCB Combatting Racism – Statements and Letters

USCCB School Resources

Mass of Peace and Justice in commemoration of the 1963 March on Washington

On August 28, Cardinal Wilton D. Gregory celebrated a commemorative Mass marking the anniversary of the 1963 March on Washington, where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his “I Have A Dream” speech.

Watch the replay of the Mass  |  Mass program

Cardinal O'Boyle gives the invocation at the 1963 March on WashingtonHistorical insights from the March on Washington

In this article published in the Catholic Standard seven years ago, on the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, a few of those who were present for the historic event share their perspectives on what it was like to be a part of history.

Invocation by Archbishop Patrick O’Boyle for the 1963 March on Washington

As we commemorate 57 years since the historic March on Washington, we look back on these words shared by Archbishop Patrick O’Boyle, who gave the invocation on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial during the march.


ADW Catechists Resource – Work and Pray to End Racism Packet – English

ADW Catechist Resource – Youth Against Racism Confirmation – Spanish

Knights of Peter Claver Social Justice Resources

Loyola Press – Everyone Belongs Activities

We Are Salt and Light – Questions to Facilitate Encounter

Smithsonian’s “Talking About Race” resource

For more information, contact the Office of Cultural Diversity and Outreach.