The Bishop of New Jersey led a service at St. Peter’s in Perth Amboy NJ that was part of an effort to make up for past indifference and domination of others. It was an attempt to undo a centuries old series of acts that reflected the church’s lack of respecting the dignity of every human being that is now part of our baptismal covenant.
“Although no one knew them personally, 38 slaves and servants of African descent who were buried in the cemetery at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in the 1700s and 1800s, many without their full names being recorded, were remembered Wednesday during a service of repentance and reconciliation at the historic church on Rector Street.
A memorial grave marker honoring them was unveiled in the cemetery. Some are believed to have been buried in a common grave. The name or a description of each person was read by Episcopal church leaders during the evening ceremony.
“In the church’s sin of racism, they were buried without recognition. This day we repent of that sin and lift them in prayer, committing ourselves to respecting the dignity of every human being in the name of Jesus Christ,” reads the stone, placed in a part of the cemetery where it is believed most people of color were buried.”