Although a wealth gap is a natural outcome of capitalism, carefully written and enforced policies and laws cause the difference in income available to the top earners in the U.S. and that available to bottom earners to grow at an increasing pace. While race is not the only factor determining earning ability, it is significant, as the top earners are primarily white and the bottom earners primarily persons of color. In addition, many of the policies and laws have the added effect of pitting bottom earners of different races against each other, all to the benefit of those earning the most. As disciples of Christ, we are called not only to alleviate immediate symptoms of the wealth gap, such as food insecurity and access to health care, but to go further and find ways to help tackle the root causes of economic injustice and poverty.
To learn more about the United Methodist stance on economic injustice toward people of color, please visit https://www.umc.org/en/content/book-of-resolutions-racism-and-economic-injustice-against-people-of-color-in-the-us
To learn more abo
ut the history and long-term effects of housing discrimination, please visit https://siliconvalleyathome.org/redlining-new-video-from-the-200/
For general information on economic injustice, please visit https://inequality.org/
To advocate for those facing economic injustice, please visit https://bread.org/
To better understand the policies that have caused the wealth gap, please visit https://www.bread.org/library/racial-wealth-gap-learning-simulation
“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves; ensure justice for those being crushed., speak up for the poor and helpless, and see that they get justice.” Proverbs 31:8-9
Gracious God, we acknowledge our relative privilege as compared to so many of your children who, through no fault of their own, find themselves impoverished and facing constant scarcity. Yet, even as we acknowledge this privilege, we confess a lack of action and advocacy on their part. Gran
t us your vision of a world where shalom justice reigns so that we are inspired to take steps, large and small, to make that vision a reality in the here and now. Fill our hearts with the fire of your love and with a desire to work for justice for all. Stir us to use the blessings, gifts, and graces that you have given us toward the work of securing equity for all your children. Amen.
1. Where do you see the wealth gap playing out in the BUMC community? What policies and practices have created the gap in our area?
2. How does advocating for policies and programs that reduce the wealth gap intersect with what you believe to be your calling in Christ? What spiritual disciplines do you adhere to that can prepare you to give your heart, mind, soul, and strength to working for wealth equity?
To explore more justice topics, check out burkeumc.org/justice!