Racial Equity

We are inspired by the word of the Lord as we seek to become an anti-racist church.

He has told you, O mortal, what is good, and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice and to love kindness and to walk humbly with your God? (Micah 6:8)

I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. (John 13:34)

He is the embodiment of our peace, sent once and for all to take down the great barrier of hatred and hostility that has divided us so that we can be one. (Ephesians 2:14)

About the Racial Equity Team



We envision a UPC community that confronts racism in every form, celebrates all of God’s people, and inspires the Church to advocate for racial equity.


The Holy Spirit pushes the Church to be fully inclusive. UPC RET exists because we are called to know and trust the work of the Holy Spirit, to uphold God’s work in our church, and to be a witness of justice and equity in the community at-large.


The RET seeks to understand, identify, and confront racism in all forms within our church and community through education, community partnerships, and thoughtful outreach. We acknowledge that as siblings in Christ, we bring diverse histories and experiences that inform our perspectives on race and racism, and we trust the word of God will guide us as we grow in relationships with one another and our neighbors.

  1. Develop authentic and informed community relationships.
  2. Establish and maintain meaningful partnerships w/ BILPOC) led organizations.
  3. Commit to ongoing introspection and change within the UPC community
  4. Regular participation (RET and UPC Congregation and staff) in education and awareness training opportunities.
  5. Increase our connection with and impact on race equity initiatives within PC(USA) and other faith communities.


All members of the UPC RET are volunteers. Together we make no claim to have all the answers to the issues involved in anti-racism work. We claim no special expertise on this issue. However, we do have lots of questions and desire to do better in this arena. We welcome comments and suggestions. We see our work as a journey, and all are welcome to join us.

Members: Mellicient Blythe (Co-Chair), Christie Osborne (Co-Chair), Chris Bevin, May Bryan, Vann Joines, Linda Kopel, Pat Morgan, Karen Vandersea, PCM representative TBD, Youth Representative TBD, Jarrett McLaughlin (staff liaison)

The RET needs volunteers to serve on the committee, facilitate events and help with community outreach. We hope you join us. RET meets on the 3rd Tuesday of the month in person and via Zoom.

Recent News from the Racial Equity Team

January 2024

  • Led a Book Study in Sunday School based on From Here to Equality by William Darity and Kirsten Mullen
  • Members of the RET attended the NAACP’s march and service honoring Martin Luther King Day on January 19, 2024

February 2024

  • Reverend Paul Timothy Roberts, Sr. will teach and preach at UPC on February 11, 2024

Please check back here as we will add events for the rest of 2024.

In 2023, the RET:

  • Read and discussed the book, Wait, Is this Racist?
  • Attended a viewing and discussion of the movie, Four Little Girls, co-hosted by Binkley Baptist Church and the Orange County Community Remembrance Coalition (OCCRC)
  • Offered our own fall film series on two evenings consisting of dinner, movie and discussion for two films— Lowndes County and I’m Smart, Too.
  • Participated in an ecumenical reading of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Letter from Birmingham Jail as this important document marked its 60th anniversary.
  • The RET, the church staff, officers and other interested church members all received anti-racism training.
  • Finalized the revision of the team’s vision, mission, purpose and goals

    Suggested Resources

    Looking for books, podcasts, and more to help you on your own anti-racist journey? Click the button for a list of suggestions from the Racial Equity Team!