Note: New diocesan Sacred Ground circles are formed throughout the year. The Racial Justice and Reconciliation Task Force invites you to sign up now to join the next diocesan circle.
What is Sacred Ground?
Sacred Ground is a film- and reading-based dialogue series on race and racism offered throughout the Episcopal Church. These faith-centered encounters create space for dialogue that is difficult but respectful and transformative. The series consists of 11 sessions, is open to all, and is especially designed to help people talk with others about such difficult topics. Learn more here.Dialogue Circles
Small groups (circles) are invited to walk through chapters of the United States’ history of race and racism, while weaving in threads of family story, economic class, and political and regional identities. It holds as its guiding star the vision of Beloved Community, where all people are honored, protected and nurtured as beloved children of God.
To date, roughly 600 individuals in the Diocese of San Diego have participated in various Sacred Ground circles. The Racial Justice and Reconciliation Task Force (RJRTF) will be glad to help more people and all congregations to participate.
We invite and encourage everyone to participate in one of two ways:
- Join a diocesan circle. These circles are offered throughout the year. Most meetings are online via Zoom, and, as of 2023, some will be offered in person. All are led by experienced facilitators. To join an upcoming circle or to get more information, please click here.
- Organize a circle in your own congregation. If you are new to Sacred Ground, the RJRTF is happy to assist you in getting started. Contact us for further information or assistance.
Sacred Ground Curriculum
- A set of documentary films and short videos, available for free to registered dialogue circles via streaming in a password-protected area.
- A set of readings, also available for free to registered dialogue circles as PDFs in a password-protected area. Participants will also need to acquire or borrow two assigned books: Jesus and the Disinherited by Howard Thurman & Waking Up White by Debby Irving. There is no other cost to you.
- The Sacred Ground Study Guide (downloadable), with suggestions for getting started, tips for facilitators, a session-by-session curriculum with reflections on key themes, and a religious resources section.
Who Can Participate?
- This resource was created for use by Episcopal congregations and other Episcopal entities across the United States. It can now be used by small groups hosted by any faith organization within certain limits.
- Congregations are also encouraged to invite others in their community, such as neighboring churches or civic groups, to join dialogue circles.
Congregational Sacred Ground Circles
Congregations are encouraged to establish their own Sacred Ground circles, and RJRTF is available to help get you started and provide general guidance and support. Please help RJRTF to maintain a participant registry by emailing Jill Henderson at Jfh@cox.net with the information below. We thank you in advance for helping us keep track of Sacred Ground participation.
- Name of congregation(s) hosting
- Name(s) and contact information of facilitators
- Open to a wider community? Yes/No – If yes, please list
- Meeting time/place/location
- Participant names & email list
Have More Questions?
For further questions or more information, please contact the Racial Justice and Reconciliation Task Force.