R2008-08: A resolution concerning economic justice work in the Episcopal Church (to be submitted to the 2009 General Convention)
Resolved, that the Diocese of Southern Ohio, through its Deputation, support the submission of the following resolution to the 76th General Convention of The Episcopal Church, meeting in Anaheim, California, July 2009:
Resolved, the House of _______________ concurring, that the General Convention affirm and adopt the following actions as the policy and program for Economic Justice of The Episcopal Church during the next six years:
1) The Episcopal Church shall urge Episcopal congregations to continue to engage in the acts of mercy and justice in which many congregations and Jubilee Centers participate. The goal of such activities should be to find ways of ending the increasing disparity that exists between social classes in our world.
2) The Episcopal Church shall urge each Episcopal congregation to fully and wholly know its neighbors, to develop relationships with the disenfranchised in their community, knowing people by their names, and to form a local partnership with an agency that is working with people of little income or few economic resources.
3) The Episcopal Church shall continue and deepen its advocacy and shall urge its dioceses and congregations (in concert with the Episcopal Public Policy Network) to advocate for legislation which provides adequate levels of support and opportunities for all people.
4) The Episcopal Church shall urge dioceses and congregations to promote and participate in church-based community organizing whereby people of the local community exercise the power of numbers and conviction to bring their needs to the attention and effective action by elected officials and governmental bodies.
5) The Episcopal Church shall support and participate in and shall urge dioceses and congregations to support and participate in various models through which low-income people can take control of their own lives and meet their own needs: models such as community development corporations, housing corporations and cooperatives, and small business development.
6) The Episcopal Church at every level shall be encouraged to make loans and deposits at a level of one to ten percent of its financial assets to community development financial institutions (community loan funds, community development banks and credit unions, and micro-loan business funds) to support local community development, and, where helpful and necessary, to create such a financial institution themselves.
7) The Episcopal Church shall develop at the national level a community development loan fund which is open to deposits from Episcopal dioceses, congregations, organizations and members with a goal of becoming a $24 million fund that will support the “community-controlled economic development programs of the disadvantaged” (quoted from the Economic Justice Resolution of the 1988 General Convention).
8) The Episcopal Church shall fund the Episcopal Network for Economic Justice at a level of $100,000 per year for the coming triennium so that it can continue and increase its mission of supporting and assisting economic justice work at every level of the Church and can help implement the ministry envisioned in this resolution.