The historical record of lived Christianity in America reveals that Christian theology and institutions have been the central cultural tent pole holding up the very idea of white supremacy. And the genetic imprint of this legacy remains present and measurable in contemporary white Christianity, not only among evangelicals in the South but also among mainline Protestants in the Midwest and Catholics in the Northeast.” [p.6]

We white Christians must find the courage to face the fact that the version of Christianity that our ancestors built—“the faith of our fathers,” as the hymn celebrates it—was a cultural force that, by design, protected and propagated white supremacy…. But if we want to root out an insidious white supremacy from our institutions, our religion, and our psyches, we will have to move beyond the forgetfulness and silence that have allowed it to flourish for so long. Importantly, as white Americans find the courage to embark on this journey of transformation, we will discover that the beneficiaries are not only our country and our fellow nonwhite and non-Christian Americans, but also ourselves, as we slowly recover from the disorienting madness of white supremacy.” [pp. 234-235]

Excerpts from White Too Long: The Legacy of White Supremacy in American Christianity by Robert P. Jones, published by Simon & Schuster, New York, USA, 2020.

Robert P. Jones is the CEO and founder of the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) and a leading scholar and commentator on religion and politics. Jones writes a column on politics, culture, and religion for The Atlantic online. He is frequently featured in major national media, such as CNN, MSNBC, NPR, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and others. He holds a PhD in religion from Emory University and an MDiv from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is the author of The End of White Christian America, which won the 2019 Grawemeyer Award in Religion.