What is Welcome Home?

“Your ancient ruins shall be rebuilt; you shall raise up the foundations of many generations; you shall be called the repairer of the breach, the restorer of streets to live in.” (Isaiah 58:12)

 

What is Welcome Home?

Welcome Home is a ministry that pays direct reparations to Black women in the Denver metro area. Black women healers, prophets, pastors, artists, activists and leaders need and deserve a safe, sacred and beautiful place as their  home/sanctuary. Therefore, Welcome Home covers costs for  repairs and renovations for homes owned by Black women thereby helping Black women rest, live joyfully,  and build intergenerational wealth. Through the enslavement of Black people in the U.S., we acknowledge that subsequent generational financial benefits were unjustly created by and for white people. Reparations are money paid by white people to Black people toward economic justice and conciliation. Reparations are not gifts.

 

Paying Reparations & Partnering with Welcome Home

Welcome Home invites individuals, churches and other organizations/institutions to pay reparations via one-time or recurring giving. We are in the pilot stage of Welcome Home and will continue to be until early Spring of 2022. In our pilot, we are collecting reparations for a Black woman healer/organizer and an elder scholar local to Denver. They are repairing and furnishing a new home.

Pilot Family Story: If you would like to learn more about this family, please take some time to watch their story here. You can also listen to some additional group reflections reflection here.

Why Welcome Home with Rev. Morgan Caruthers Fletcher & Rev. Reagan Humber: Watch their video here.

Individuals, congregations, and organizations who participate in seeding the pilot will be listed below and recognized for their commitment to ongoing reparations partnership alongside the Welcome Home project. The minimum reparations amount to be included as a partner is:

Individuals/Couples/Circles/Families: $1,000 + *
Congregations & Organizations: $5,000 + *

*Since we are intentionally inviting long-term, ongoing reparations, all partners are encouraged to participate annually, quarterly, or monthly. Your total annual reparations must be equal to or above $1,000 for individuals and $5,000 for congregations and organizations at minimum.

Online reparations donations are subject to banking fees. If you’d like to avoid banking fees, please mail a check to Welcome Home c/o House for All Sinners and Saints, PO Box 18973, Denver, CO 80218. Please include “Welcome Home” in the memo line.

 

Jubilee Message & Invitation

The scriptures lift up reparations as a holy instrument of justice used to repent of unjust economic structures and to mend communities that have been left behind by a prospering nation. In Numbers chapter 5 and Leviticus 7, Torah lays out the practice of a guilt-offering, sometimes translated as reparation or trespass offering, whereby anyone who has infringed upon what belongs to anyone else must make an offering at the temple followed by monetary compensation to the victim. 

In Exodus 3, God lays out a plan of reparations for the soon-to-be liberated enslaved People of Israel: ““I will bring this people into such favor with the Egyptians that, when you go, you will not go empty-handed; each woman shall ask her neighbor and any woman living in the neighbor’s house for jewelry of silver and of gold, and clothing, and you shall put them on your sons and on your daughters; and so you shall plunder the Egyptians.” As the Israelites prepare to flee Egypt  they indeed follow up on this promise and receive their reparations from the Egyptians. 

The Prophet Isaiah then calls on the People of Israel to repair the breach between the prosperous and those afflicted with yoke of oppression. Isaiah says that, if we lose the bonds of injustice, if we undo the thongs of the yoke, if we let the oppressed go free, if we remove the yoke from among us, then,

“Your ancient ruins shall be rebuilt;
   you shall raise up the foundations of many generations;
 you shall be called the repairer of the breach,
   the restorer of streets to live in.” (Is. 58:12)

Leviticus 25 speaks to the year of Jubilee – the year at the end of seven cycles of sabbatical years, focusing on ownership and management of Land. It is a practice of releasing debts, freeing those enslaved, and returning land to its original owners. It is easy for many of us to dismiss Jubilee because we see the barriers before we allow ourselves   to see the possibilities of what modern Jubilee invites us to do. Reparations for Black women healers is a lived practice of Jubilee. And with each practice of Jubilee the world and Her people celebrate. It is a celebration that all persons involved – those giving reparations and those receiving – are bringing about a deep and needed healing to the very beings that have been generationally harmed by keeping debts, enslaving people, and unequal distribution of resources. Reparations may have some thinking politics but reparations are, at its very core, Jubilee in breath and action.

For millennia Jubilee has been debated as a nice theory but with Welcome Home Jubilee is no longer theory but lived repairing, needed healing, and hope seeding work. May we be inspired by the liberating nature of Jubilee as we prophetically imagine a world where Black women healers have the basic human right of housing to give them a sanctuary for them to rest, restore, and renew their beings. Jubilee allows us to bring about a world where we are freed from the  harsh  realities  of  overworked people  and  land,  the  weight  of  debts,  and  the generational  impacts  of overconsumption. While different in name, Welcome Home is Jubilee, Jubilee is Welcome Home and all of us involved are beginning to repair 400 years of intentional harm with intentional healing and hope. 

While we acknowledge that no amount of financial restitution can undo the harms inflicted upon Black Americans through slavery and the economic apartheid that followed, as people of faith, we must do what we can now to repair the breach between white and black communities that only continues to widen. Therefore, Welcome Home seeks to live into the biblical vision of restitution, repair and Jubilee because white supremacy harms all of us. Scripture is so clear that structural inequalities must be redressed on an ongoing basis precisely because economic injustice is not only violence towards the marginalized, but also to the whole of society. And so we pray, that the bonds of injustice are indeed loosened, that the oppressed go free and that we may one day be truly called as repairers of the breach and restorers of streets to live in.

 

Who is Organizing Welcome Home?

Welcome Home is organized by predominantly white churches with the guidance of Black women leaders from Soul 2 Soul Sisters. Reparations to Welcome Home are distributed to the Black community via the Welcome Home leadership. Currently, Welcome Home is led by Pastor Reagan Humber (HFASS), the Reverend Morgan Fletcher (Calvary Baptist), and staff members from Soul 2 Soul Sisters.

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Since HFASS is a 501(c)(3) not for profit religious organization, all reparations to Welcome Home are tax-deductible charitable contributions. You will receive a contribution receipt automatically.

 

Seed Partners – Congregations & Organizations

  • House for All Sinners & Saints (Denver)
  • Sixth Avenue UCC (Denver)

Seed Partners – Individuals

  • Kathryn White 
  • Lotte Lieb Dula
  • Jonathon Stalls
  • TF

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