SEJ UMC Annual Conference Leaders and Communicators,
At the October 2017 Lake Junaluska Assembly Board of Trustees Meeting the attached Statement on Racism was unanimously approved. This was initially encouraged by a motion of the Holston Conference but was also in response to the tragedy of Charlottesville, VA. The purpose of the statement is to acknowledge past wrongs made by Lake Junaluska and to commit to being a place that truly welcomes and embraces all people in the future.
Please feel free to share this in whatever way is appropriate for your Conference. Our hope is that this can become a model that other United Methodist organizations will embrace and make similar commitments to addressing the significant issue of racism in our country and world.
Grace and Peace,
91 N. Lakeshore Drive | PO Box 67 | Lake Junaluska, NC 28745
828.454.6701 | Cell: 828.400-7110
*Statement on Racism *
Lake Junaluska Assembly, Inc. Board of Trustees Lake Junaluska was established by people of the Christian faith more than 100 years ago and has continued to be led by followers of Jesus Christ throughout its history. People of the Christian faith believe in a God of love. Not only do Christians believe that we are loved by God but that we are to love our fellow human beings; we are to love ALL of God’s children.
Lake Junaluska has not shown love or even acceptance of some of God’s children during some of its 104 year history. In particular, people of color, specifically African Americans, were not loved or even welcomed during a significant part of our history. As we reflect on this history, it is clear that Lake Junaluska not only allowed individuals in the majority culture to participate in racist behaviors but the organization itself created and maintained restrictions, written and unwritten, that were racist. As leaders of Lake Junaluska Assembly, Inc. in 2017, we acknowledge this failure to do as we have been called by God to do; to love ALL of God’s children. For this we repent.
As evidenced by recent events in our nation, state, and in our own county, racism continues to be present. While Lake Junaluska has made progress in addressing institutionalized racism, we commit to being diligent in identifying any forms of racism that exist and to implement actions to eliminate it. We commit to do the following:
● Determine what changes can be made to attract more people of color to
work and live at Lake Junaluska,
● Confirm that the seeking and hiring of staff includes processes that
increase the probability of hiring qualified persons of color,
● Include a statement in the Human Resources Policy Manual that racism will
not be tolerated by persons employed at Lake Junaluska, and
● Confirm that the training and orientation of staff includes a focus on
behaviors that clearly welcome ALL as well as educating staff on behaviors
that will not be tolerated,
As leaders of Lake Junaluska Assembly, Inc. and followers of Jesus Christ
we commit to loving ALL of God’s children.
Board of Trustees
Lake Junaluska Assembly, Inc.
October 20, 2017