Knee on My Neck: Slavery’s Ghost
A Five-Week Virtual Retreat

First Meeting
Juneteenth - Friday, June 19, 7:00-8:30 p.m.

Subsequent Meetings on Wednesdays
June 24, July 1, 8, and 15, 7:00–8:30 p.m.

Participants must commit to participating
in the whole series as it is cumulative 
A Program of Roots & Branches: Programs For Spiritual Growth
in collaboration with the diocesan Reparations Committee
Co-sponsored by Rural & Migrant Ministry, Inc.
Since the murder of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Abery, protests have sprung up across the country demanding real change. Is this the time for that change? Is this the moment that will lead to a lasting difference? It CAN be. Let’s not let it slip by.

Embedded in the institution of slavery are principles that are the foundation of successive oppressive institutions in American culture today. Join us in this five-part webinar series to explore, understand, and strategize ways of transforming those corrupt principles intended to benefit a few, into life-affirming policies for the good of all.

Knee on My Neck: Slavery’s Ghost uses lectures, videos, and other supportive resource materials to help prepare participants to generate plans and strategies for parishes, the diocese, and the wider church embody and bear witness to policies and actions that affirm, support, and celebrate all.
This program is created by the Rev. Masud Ibn Syedullah, TSSF, assisted by the Rev. Chuck Kramer, Rector of St. James, Hyde Park and member of Reparations Committee.

The Rev. Masud Ibn Syedullah TSSF, a priest of the Diocese of New York , is Founder and Director of Roots & Branches: Programs for Spiritual Growth, . A Professed member of the Third Order, Society of Saint Francis, (a Christian Community in the Episcopal Church and Anglican Communion), his spirituality and ministry are inspired by the peacemaking and reconciling witness of St. Francis of Assisi. For more than thirty years he has designed and led an array of conferences, retreats, workshops, and spiritual pilgrimages to strengthen and further the mission of the Church throughout the Episcopal Church, other Provinces of the Anglican Communion, and other denominations as well. An African American raised in the inner city of St. Louis, Missouri during the 50’s and 60’s, and having lived and ministered in several parts of the United States, he is well aware of our nation’s struggle to assure equal rights and opportunities under the law for all its people. Having already successfully produced and led programs devoted to racial healing for the Reparations Committee, he now offers Knee on Neck: Slavery’s Ghost to help guide us towards the next crucial steps to develop institutional policy reforms in response to our current national situation.

The Reparations Committee was created in 2006 in response to three 2006 General Convention resolutions calling on dioceses to respond to the Transatlantic Slave Trade and its aftermath of segregation and discrimination. The Committee produced a DVD for churches called, The Diocese of New York Examines Slavery: Talking About Reparations, Repair and Reconciliation. The Committee also produced A Year Of Lamentations in 2018, which involved a lamentation of the Diocese’s role in enslavement through book studies, films, discussion, liturgy and theater. The Committee specifically produced the theatrical production: A NEW YORK LAMENTATION. Presently the Committee is developing a series of podcasts entitled: “We All Have Skin In the Game” as well as shepherding the creation of a one million dollar Diocesan Reparations Fund. 

* “Reparations is the process to remember, repair, restore, reconcile and make amends for wrongs that can never be singularly reducible to monetary terms. The process of reparations is “an historical reckoning involving acknowledgement that an offense against humanity was committed and that the victims have not received justice.**”
** Passage in quotes offered by Bernice Powell Jackson, Executive Minister for Justice Ministry, The United Church of Christ.
Please contact the Rev. Richard Witt ~