Washington, DC Archbishop Wilton Gregory said at an online conference that the current unrest centering around racial injustice gives him hope as it reflects the unity of the nation.
“These times fill my heart with deep sorrow at the suffering of people in light of the pandemic, in light of the economic repercussions, and also in light of the obviously cruel and unjust murder of innocent people,” Gregory said.
“But it also fills my heart with hope because, as we have seen, many of the protests have been a wonderful assembly of Americans across cultural, racial, age, regional and religious affiliations.”
Gregory added that people should reach out to one another, learn about others who are different from themselves and rediscover that all religions teach that hatred is wrong.
“Ignorance of the other is the soil in which hatred and bigotry grow. If we do not know each other, share our fears and share our hopes, we make it possible for hatred to grow,” he said, also praising the American media for extensively covering the racial justice protests.
“When we as a nation start to talk about these heavyweight realities that so influence our nation, it bespeaks a different moment, I hope, I pray.”
According to Gregory, having reached this point, people can start working together toward solving the country’s critical problems and “this moment also offers us the possibility of changing hearts.”
The country’s only black Catholic archbishop made the remarks at a Zoom meeting last week sponsored by the American Jewish Committee (AJC), a New York-based Jewish advocacy group.
During the event titled “Race in America: The Faith Perspective,” speakers discussed the role religions can play in terms of fighting racial injustice.