Fontbonne Community Unites for Racial Justice

Fontbonne students, faculty and staff gathered together virtually on Wednesday, June 3rd to unite their voices against racial injustice.  More than 130 members of the community took part in the Courageous Conversation that lasted more than two hours.

The conversation began with a prayer in honor of George Floyd and the countless other black and brown lives lost due to racism. We then joined together in a peaceful meditation led by our school counselor, Ms. Nikki Myers. Students and staff then broke off into separate affinity groups.  Before concluding, the full community joined back together to listen and learn from our black and brown sisters who shared their intense grief, personal struggles and their thoughts on how their peers of whiteness can speak up and help be the change. The conversation was eye-opening, emotional and an intimate way to learn from each other. 

The Fontbonne mission is dedicated to serving the dear neighbor WITHOUT distinction.  Our community will continue to affirm the dignity of all and empower our students to use their voices to speak out against all social injustices.   

Please read the message sent to our community from the Head of School: 

Dear Fontbonne Community, 

As I reflect on the tragic events happening within our nation, I am reminded of the mission of Fontbonne calling all of us to recognize the dignity of all people. Throughout the past week, we have witnessed the direct violation of a person's dignity, of a systemic issue in our society that is contributing to the brokenness of our world and inhibiting the unity that we are called to work towards. As a community who is dedicated to standing up against injustice, to examining the root causes of injustice, and to taking action so all human life is valued and all dignity is upheld regardless of our differences, we implore all of us to live our mission.

We are called to see God in every person. As a diverse community, we recognize the pain and suffering we are experiencing right now especially our women of color and their families. We stand in solidarity with all in our community to dismantle racism. As women of social justice, we need to use our voice, our strength, and stand up for one another. At this time in our society, we look to one another for guidance and support. We listen. We are open to conversations, that, at times, can be very difficult. We are challenged to find our truth, to speak our truth, and be witnesses every day to the love of God.  

I believe change begins with us - with strong women and men who work everyday to treat one another with respect and value our dignity. If we, as a community, choose to love, choose to listen, choose to lead our lives respecting ourselves and one another, we will have the power to change this world. Dr. King taught us, "True peace is not merely the absence of tension; it is the presence of justice.” 

I send this message to you today as we, as a society, are devastated and challenged by the death of George Floyd and all of the injustice we see unfolding by the moment. As we unite with our Sisters of St. Joseph and work to unify neighbor to neighbor and neighbor with God, I want you to know that Fontbonne and her mission remain strong. Now, more than ever, we need to empower women to use their voice, find confidence in who they are, and be in a community that teaches young women how to be advocates for social change.  

We pray today for our community and for all those who are suffering. We pray we will live our values showing respect for others, understanding our responsibility to one another, experiencing the power of reconciliation and living as women of reverence who choose to see God in all human beings so we can live in a just and loving world. We come together to love one another without distinction. 

We are women of courage made strong.   

Many blessings,

Head of School