Today’s conversations often fall back onto the subject of “racism” or “white privilege.” What if we were asked this question: “How has your life been shaped by your race?” That is definitely something that would give us pause to reflect. Yet the answer to that question should give us some insight into our world. When we cannot adequately express what it means to be white, it would be impossible to know what it means to not be white, but a person of color. Let’s talk about White Fragility and some of the myths about racism that are a part of church life.
Speaker: Rev. Vincent Lachina
Rev. Vincent Lachina has served as Planned Parenthood’s Northwest Regional Chaplain for almost 14 years, providing support to patients and community members in Washington, Northern Oregon, Alaska, Idaho, and now the Hawaiian Islands. This is a unique position since it is the only chaplain position is Planned Parenthood in the US. Additionally, Rev. Lachina works to create an active network of progressive congregations in the Northwest who support reproductive justice for women, currently numbering more than 750. He is an adjunct member of Planned Parenthood Federation of America’s National Clergy Advocacy Board, which provides guidance and advocacy on reproductive health and justice issues nationwide, and has served on the Board of Directors of the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project as a part of his passion on immigration rights.
Rev. Lachina has been an ordained minister for over 50 years, and is currently aligned with the American Baptist Conference. Rev. Lachina relocated from the Mid-west to Washington State to serve as Senior Pastor at a Seattle-based congregation, where he remained for more than eleven years. His current work as Chaplain continues his commitment to the tradition of the American Baptist Conference to pursue peace and justice issues.
Born into an Italian Catholic family, Rev. Lachina became a Protestant and joined a Southern Baptist congregation as a teenager where he experienced his calling into the ministry of the Church. Rev. Lachina was raised in Jackson, Mississippi and spent his college and early adult years in Birmingham, Alabama and Ft. Worth, Texas. He served in congregations and religious organizations in Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Kansas for more than two decades prior to moving to the Northwest. He also served as missionary in Nairobi, Kenya, East Africa.
Rev. Lachina holds the BA in Religion and English from Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama, and the MRE in Religion and Education from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Ft. Worth, Texas.
Just as the choice to tell a lie has consequences, so does telling the truth at times. For those of us in the world of reproductive justice work, speaking truth to power has some fairly dramatic consequences. Here are some stories about what happens in the life of a Planned Parenthood chaplain who attempts to tell the truth about women’s health and rights. Sometimes those consequences are dramatic and hurtful, sometimes they are surprising.