Racial Justice

Celebrating Juneteenth

Celebrating Juneteenth

Two and a half years after U.S. President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, Union army general Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston, Texas, on June 19th, 1865, with news that the enslaved were now free.

“The people of Texas are informed that in accordance with a Proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free,” stated General Order Number 3.
“This involves an absolute equality of rights and rights of property between former masters and slaves, and the connection heretofore existing between them becomes that between employer and free laborer.”

Former slaves rejoiced, and June 19 became an annual celebration in Texas and in neighboring states where former slaves had migrated. Toward the end of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th, as textbooks left out mention of Juneteenth, as Jim Crow laws began to further disenfranchise African Americans, as the Great Depression took hold, Juneteenth celebrations declined. Juneteenth found a resurgence during the Civil Rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s, and in 1980 Texas declared Juneteenth an official state holiday. On June 17, 2021, President Biden signed the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act into law, making Juneteenth a federal holiday. Learn more about Juneteenth and the Juneteenth movement at nationaljuneteenth.com and juneteenth.com.

United Methodist Women will continue the work of racial justice until we live in a world in which all have the equal opportunity to thrive. For resources, visit unitedmethodistwomen.org/racial-justice.

Speak up for racial justice. Read our stories:

United Methodist Women Celebrates New Juneteenth Federal Holiday
Consistent and Faithful Witnesses - Read the story from Emily Jones, UMW’s executive for racial justice, at redletterchristians.org
Taking a stand; Holston Conference UMW adopts policy for racial equality at thedailytimes.com
United Methodist Women Today Applauded the Guilty Verdict of Former Police Officer Derek Chauvin
United Methodist Women Reiterates the "Call to Stop Criminalizing Communities of Color in the United States"
United Methodist Women Board Affirms 'Black Lives Matter to God' in New Call to Action to Members
General Secretaries Table: Statement on Racism at umc.org
United Methodist Women Mourns Lives Lost, Expresses Solidarity with Asian American and Pacific Islander Communities
Black Lives Matter to God and Black Lives Matter to United Methodist Women
United Methodist Women Urges Members to Resist Racism in Hearts, Homes, Communities and Country
Central Texas United Methodist Women respond to the police killing of Atatiana Jefferson
Faith Talks: #SayHerName

Posted or updated: 6/16/2021 12:00:00 AM
Racial JusticeMass Incarceration

Video: Rev. Dr. Cornell Brooks on Juneteenth, United Methodist Women

Take Action:

Urge your representative to support the Ending PUSHOUT Act

Study Pushout: The Criminalization of Black Girls in School at Mission u

School-to-Prison Pipeline Bible Study: a curriculum for your group

"Juneteenth: Staying the Course of Freedom and Flourishing for All" at r2hub.org

Learn More:

*Racial Justice Timeline

Bishops' Juneteenth Announcement

Faith Talks: Dismantling Racism