Nov 22, 2022Beloved Community of Care and Love Book Study – Ghost Ship: Institutional Racism and the Church of England

Beloved Community of Care and Love Book Study – Ghost Ship: Institutional Racism and the Church of England

Shirley Bolden Two-minute read.   Resources

Please join us as we resume our book study on Undoing Racism with our next book:

“Ghost Ship: Institutional Racism and the Church of England” by A. D. A France-Williams

Through conversation with clergy, lay people and campaigners in the Church of England; his own personal experience – from growing up in Chapeltown, an African-Caribbean suburb of Leeds, via his early involvement with his Parish and then his Priesthood; the use of morality tales; philosophical observations; and historical analysis – all bound together by a poetic and elegant style – A. D. A France-Williams issues a stark warning to the church, demonstrating how black and brown ministers are left to drown in a sea of complacency and collusion.

While sticking plaster remedies abound, A. D. A France-Williams argues that what is needed is a wholesale change in structure and mindset.

Unflinching in its critique of the church, Ghost Ship explores the harrowing stories of institutional racism experienced then and now, within the Church of England.

Far from being an issue which can be solved by simply recruiting more black and brown clergy, says France-Williams, structural racism requires a complete dismantling and reassembling of the ship – before it is too late.

But A. D. A France-Williams a priest in the Church of England in an urban parish which is a member of the Heart Edge church network, says the reality is that the institution has utterly failed to back up these good intentions with demonstrable efforts to reform.  It is a long way from being a place of black flourishing.

Commenting on the book, the Most Rev. Michael B. Curry, Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church said: “Although the subtitle of France-Williams’ new book is ‘Institutional Racism and the Church of England,’ make no mistake: — here is a powerful and provocative word to people on both sides of the ocean, wherever racial injustice is found.”

We will offer discussion groups twice per week:

  • Tuesday, January 24, 2023, through February 14, 2023, from 4:30 p.m. via Zoom
  • Thursday, January 26, 2023, through February 16, 2023, from 7 p.m. via Zoom

You may purchase the book on Amazon (and other sellers).

If you are interested in joining our Beloved Community of Care and Love Book Club, please contact Shirley Bolden via email at Please provide your name, e-mail, phone number, and which session you would like to attend.

Please register by contacting Shirley Bolden via email at

Shirley Bolden is the Chair of the Diversity and Reconciliation Commission.

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