• Special Reports

Task Force for Justice and Reparations Report

June 30, 2022

Dear Friends at Trinity,
We are pleased to offer the final report of the Task Force for Justice and Reparations, linked here:
The Task Force began its journey two years ago this month, in June, 2020, when after the horrific murder of George Floyd, our Rector, Rev. Morgan Allen, and Senior Warden Mark Morrow, invited us to this work. We have been on a journey over these last two years, a profound, life-changing journey for many of us. We began by sharing our stories of our life experiences, particularly in the context of race, listening deeply to one another as we did so. We worked intensely for well over a year, synthesized what we learned, and, more recently, presented those findings to you in three parish forums in May. In the process, we felt the bonds of love as part of a Beloved Community, and the importance of giving our best to this work. This report is that – our best– though we acknowledged it as necessarily imperfect, in its presentation of our work and recommendations. Certainly some will find the material too bold, while others will find it not bold enough, an inevitability in a parish of Trinity’s breadth.  Despite this, we offer the report faithfully and in hopes of continuing our growth and progress in a shared journey toward justice.
What we discovered was sometimes unsettling and uncomfortable, including learning of our own beloved parish’s early history that included the accumulation of wealth in part from the unpaid labor for decades of enslaved African-Americans, brought to the shores of this country against their will, and under horrific circumstances. Our magnificent building includes traces of that economy in some of our stained-glass window memorials. One of our named endowment funds clearly came from parishioners who gained wealth directly from the slave trade.
We also discovered that for many years, Trinity’s clergy and parishioners have engaged in work fulfilling the prophet Isaiah’s call to be “repairers of the breach” in our society, and in our city. We believe we are called today to join them and all those who have sought justice, seeking repentance, reparations, and healing – in our own faith community, and in the city of Boston. We recognize that our recommendations are only the next steps of this journey, which we understand must be a lifelong commitment devotion. Can this change happen? We believe it can, if we will devote ourselves to it, day by day, year by year, step by step, as a faith community who believes in the power of love that God calls us to.
We are grateful for the invitation of Morgan and Mark to do this work.  We have felt your embrace, interest, support and prayers as we have made this journey. Thank you.  
With the publication of this report (which will also be available in print form in a few weeks), our work concludes. Now, we invite all of you to continue this journey, which we believe is only best done in community, not by a few, but by everyone, as we attempt, in our day, to be repairers of the breach, doing so as people of faith in Beloved Community. 
We believe and pray that Love will show us the way.
With faith, hope and love,
Trinity Task Force for Justice and Reparations
Constance R. Perry, Co-chair 
Stephen Hendrickson, Co-chair 
Morgan Allen, Rector 
Barbara Dortch-Okara, Junior Warden 
Nien-hê Hsieh, Vestry Member 
Rev. Tom Kennedy 
Peter Lawrence 
Mark Morrow, Senior Warden 
Marva Nathan 
Jill Norton 
Chris Parris, Vestry Member 
Cynthia Staples