The conference was formed in 1972 to bring Christian denominations together for collaboration on a wide variety of programs and issues important to the Oklahoma faith community. It includes denominational groups like the Episcopal Diocese of Oklahoma, Oklahoma United Methodist Conference, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Oklahoma.
Other denominations represented include: African Methodist Episcopal, African Methodist Episcopal Zion, Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, Christian Methodist Episcopal, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Mennonite Church, Presbyterian Church USA, Progressive Oklahoma Baptist State Convention, Reformed Church in America, Religious Society of Friends, and the United Church of Christ. Several individual churches and faith organizations are part of the coalition, as well.
Fleck said it took about two years to craft the statement but it couldn’t be more timely in the wake of ongoing protests against racial injustice occurring around the country, part of what has been called a national reckoning on race. She said the conference initially began focusing on anti-racism while hosting seminars on white privilege and then deciding to offer the seminars themselves.
“We believe the way we treat people is an issue of faith. We recognize that the Bible outlines explicit ways we are to treat one another, and that there is no room in our faith tradition for casting people aside into any margin of society. We believe that people are and should be treated equally, as we are all the beloved children of God,” the statement said.