Dominican Sisters of Sinsinawa Public Statement in Response to the Recent Burnings of African-American Churches in LA and the Highlander Center in TN

Holy Week 2019, Sinsinawa, WI

The Dominican Sisters of Sinsinawa, WI condemn the violent acts that have recently occurred with the burning of three predominantly African-American churches in St. Landry Parish, LA, and the burning of the Highlander Center in New Market, TN. While the motive for these attacks remains under investigation, the attacks appear to be the target of a hateful white power movement. Authorities recently arrested and charged an individual with hate crimes for burning the century old churches in Louisiana. At the Highlander Center, a symbol associated with white supremacy was spray painted on the pavement near the burned building.

According to the Southern Poverty Law Center’s annual report, “Year in Hate and Extremism,” United States hate groups have increased 30 percent over the past four years with a 7 percent increase in 2018 alone. We call on our elected leaders at all levels of local, state, and national government as well as religious leaders to speak out publicly against hate and white supremacy.

As a congregation of Catholic Sisters, we stand in opposition to groups that are driven by supremacist ideology that promote hatred of any kind toward others. We support all those who work towards the elimination of hatred in all forms and are committed to advocate for an end to racism and bigotry in our country.