The emergence of Black Lives Matter (BLM) in 2013 was ‘in response to the acquittal of Trayvon Martin’s murderer.’ BLM later developed into an international human rights movement, especially ‘within the African-American community, which campaigns against violence and systemic racism towards black people.’ There are also ‘broader issues such as racial profiling, and racial inequality in the … criminal justice system’ bearing in mind the racial disproportionate number of black workers – police officers, clergy, medical staffs on complaint and discipline processes.  The sadistic and monstrous manner George Floyd and many others were murdered without any hope to stop the evil also tells us that, we have not learn any lesson, hence the increasing discrimination and violence inflicted on Black communities.

Robert Williams in his book, Racism Learned at an Early Age Through Racial Scripting, not only reveals ‘what white parents, relatives, media, schools and religious organisations teach children about African Americans,’ it points to ‘the process by which white children acquire racist attitudes.’[1] On the origin of racism which is either learned or inherited, home grown and home taught, and shaped by the white privilege and white benefits, Williams in section three of the book highlighted how racism is acquired and transmitted through racial scripts. A learned racial script, ‘a series of programmed stereotypes and myths about a racial or ethnic group other than one’s own … is activated upon the appearance of race-specific stimuli in the environment.’ It is very helpful to see how Williams among other sources of racial induced scripts identified the family and the church. The family as the basic institution with parents as the primary agents of socialisation and spiritual formation helps the children to learn the fundamentals of life through the teaching of the “three R’s (reading, writing and arithmetic). …. there is also another instructional system taught to young children called the fourth “R” or RACISM.’

Trinity Sunday provides windows of reflections about race and church. Racism is man’s ruin, racism is the church’s and nation’s ruin but the Trinity points to God’s remedy and restoration. Richard Rohr in one of his works reminds us how God as Trinity dissolves racism. He said, “The widespread Christian failure to understand and experience God as Trinity has provided a breeding ground for both implicit and explicit racism.” Rohr while looking ‘at one of the very destructive effects of a diminished, anti-transformative image of God on the perennial and ubiquitous issue of racism,’ he reminds us about the pagan heritage that today forms ‘most Christian notions of the Divine …than by the central Christian doctrine of the Trinity.’ Rohr’s explanation that ‘racism is often rooted in this distorted view of divinity; rather than reflecting the One who created all things in God’s own “image and likeness” reminds us of the effects of the sin of unbelief and how humanity have become spiritually blind, deaf, and mute not to know that “the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one” (Genesis 1:26-27, 1 Jn 5:19). [2]

On the major problem that ignited some of the early church fathers’ finest intuitions, Rohr points to the pride and challenge of ‘a top-down universe, a pyramid much more than the circular dance (perischoresis).’ This pride and challenge has to do ‘with a conception of God as an old white man sitting in the clouds, it is of little surprise that white men, preferably empowered white men, are considered the closest to God and the most worthy of respect and value.’ In order to over come this wild conception of God, the daring image, Perichoresis, the Trinity as dance led to the ‘consensus around this utterly new revelation of God’ based on the Scripture as God-breathe.

In one of his lyrics, Bob Marley (1945-1981), the Jamaican singer, songwriter and musician said, “Until the philosophy which hold one race superior and other inferior is finally and permanently discredited and abandoned, everywhere is war… That until there is no longer first class and second class citizens of any nation, until the colour of a man’s skin is no more significance than the colour of his eyes …that until the basic rights are equally guaranteed to all without regard to race – Dis a war. That until that day the dream of lasting peace, world citizenship, and rule of international morality will remain in but a fleeting illusion to be pursued, but never attained …” The philosophy which hold one race superior and other inferior in words and action is the racism’s ruin that is ruining and declining the church and causing war all over the world. Trinity Sunday reminds us of God’s remedy, an interdependent mutual relationship and engagement of all interactive reality for the community and national development. God’s remedy is to make humanity as temple of the divine presence and pattern where togetherness integrates and makes the whole.

Racism’s ruin is based on the human ego that is ‘so resistant to anything its mind cannot quickly process and control; it prefers separateness and a sense of superiority – precisely what the Trinity rejects and denies.’ In any church or nations, where racism remains and reigns, decline remains and reigns, and death remains inevitable. God’s unique remedy for man’s ruin, especially racism’s ruin is His only begotten Son.

Trinity Sunday especially in such a time as this offers us the opportunity to repent from ‘the widespread Christian failure to understand and experience God as Trinity.’ The breeding ground for both implicit and explicit racism is personal and corporate, hence the need first for personal repentance. Mark Henderson explained that racism is learnt from fear of the unknown.[3] To overcome the fear of the unknown, we need to learn not to fear people from different ethnic groups. Perfect love casts out all fear (1Jn 4:18). Only God’s love as expressed in the Trinity can help to put our fears, known and unknown to rest. Perfect love beyond the imperfect stage of mere talking about the need to share Christ, summons us to share Christ. You don’t just talk about the hungry, you feed them. God loves first. When we know and believe the love of God and trust the love that God has for us in Jesus Christ, God abides in us and God’s love overflows into action and is perfected with us, even confidence for the Second Coming of Jesus. The reflection is that you cannot love perfectly and still be a racist (2 Cor 13:11-13).

[1] Robert, L, Williams, Racism Learned at an Early Age Through Racial Scripting (Milton Keynes: AuthorHouse, 2007), pp. 8, 29, 43-72, 197-206.

[2] Richard Rohr,

[3] Mark Henderson,