Join Churches Together in England on 25 May 2022 for #CandleOfJustice – commemorating the second anniversary of George Floyd’s murder and renewing the nation’s commitment to tackling racism.
The #CandleOfJustice will be a moment to light a candle, pray for racial justice and commit to taking personal and institutional action to tackle racial injustice in our society and our churches. We are encouraging Christians and churches up and down the country to get involved, lighting their candle and praying the Candle Of Justice prayer at noon on Wednesday 25 May.
“We invite the nation to share their stories of the work they have done in challenging racial injustice and highlighting the systems they have set up to tackle racism within their churches and within broader society. We also ask that they recommit to continuing their work in tackling racism and enabling a fair, equal and equitable society for all. We recognise that there is still a lot more work to do,” says CTE’s Principal Officer for Pentecostal, Charismatic and Multi-cultural Relations, Shermara Fletcher.
Reflecting on this anniversary CTE President and Moderator of the Free Churches Group Rev Helen Cameron says “We all remember the moment we heard about the death of George Floyd murdered by a white policeman standing on his neck. Since then, sadly we have all witnessed or heard testimony of countless other acts of racist hatred and injustice. It is not enough for good people to be horrified but then do nothing to work for change. We must dismantle white privilege, name racism when we encounter it, and commit ourselves to change. This will be costly but God calls us to seek justice and unearth hope for all.”
Candle of Justice prayer
We come before you today repenting of our lack of engagement with justice concerns.
Forgive us when we commit the sin of racism and forgive our systems and institutions when they fail in this area.
Enable us by your divine grace and your Holy Spirit to confront racial injustice, inequality and renew our commitment to pursuing racial justice.
Let our churches and organisations be at the forefront of advancing racial justice concerns and denouncing any form of abuse through your kingdom on earth.
Help us to continually seek the image of Christ In others and remind us that we, your people, are made in the image of a God of justice who calls on us to ‘act justly’.
Help us to resist the evil temptation to exclude, discriminate and uphold harmful ideologies that cause division and hate in our communities and church.
We pray as a nation that we move beyond seeing racial equality as a moment, but as a movement towards your justice
Give us the courage to stand up for justice in those places and spaces
inhabited by the sin of racism, which has no place in your kingdom.
Take away the well-meaning, but unhelpful ‘colour blind’ theologies that deny the reality of the racism faced by many in our churches and society.
May we know that their struggles are our struggles,
because racial justice is everyone’s business.
If the world insists that the black lives on the margins are weak,
Remind us that in your kingdom those at the margins are seen as strong.
If the world tells us of that the fate of the just must be dictated by the unjust
Remind us that in your kingdom the unjust are transformed by the just.
If the world declares that racial terror does not exist,
Remind us that in your kingdom truth joins hands with justice.
If the world believes there is nothing more to hope for,
Remind us that your kingdom is built by those who hope and believe change will come.
Follow these five simple steps for how you and your church can get involved in the national #CandleOfJustice campaign on 25 May:
1. At noon, pause for one minute to remember George Floyd and all those who experience racism
2. Light your candle (or alternatively shine a light from your phone)
3. Pray using the Candle of Justice prayer
4. Pause, reflect and make a personal commitment to tackling racial injustice
5. Share on social media – upload your candle photo or share the Candle of Justice prayer graphic. Remember to use the hashtag #CandleOfJustice and tag in @ChurchesEngland
*Safety note – please take all necessary fire precautions when using a lit candle. Ensure you remain with the lit candle at all times, and do not leave it to burn if you leave the room. Ensure there are no fabrics or materials such as curtains near the candle. If you are able to use a small electric ‘candle’ instead, that will be safe to leave unattended.
Resources to download and share
- Download an A4 pdf of the Candle of Justice prayer
- Download a Candle of Justice graphic for Facebook posts
- Download a Candle of Justice graphic for Twitter posts
- Download a Candle of Justice graphic for Instagram
Daily prayers for racial justice
From Monday 23 May through to Sunday 29 May we will offer daily prayers on the theme of racial justice. These have been written by leaders and emerging leaders from our national Member Churches.
Our media partner for #CandleOfJustice, Premier, will play these prayers on their radio stations during that week. There will also be a special racial justice edition of the Sunday evening Prayers of Hope radio programme on 22 May.