A segment of the Roman Catholic order known as the Jesuits has promised to raise $100 million to give to slave descendants. The pledge to raise the money for slavery reparations will also promote a variety of racial reconciliation initiatives.

Details of Pledge

The Society of Jesus is a branch of the Roman Catholic Church known by most as simply the Jesuits. The group will partner with the GU272 Descendants Association to start the Descendants Truth & Reconciliation Foundation. This group will raise the funds to pay for reparations to the descendants of slaves that the Jesuits once traded. The new partnership was announced on Monday through a joint statement.

Fr. Tim Kesicki, president of the Jesuit Conference of Canada and the United States, was clear that the group needed to do its part to end racism in America. He added that the goal of the group was to join “hearts and hands in true unity” so that racism was properly addressed. Kesicki said that the Gospel instructs them to confess that slaveholding in the past was a sin. As such, the Jesuits need to work toward the goal of achieving racial justice. Raising the money for the reparations is just part of that initiative.

Fund Already Raising Money

According to Kesicki, the fund has already raised $15 million toward its goal. The Jesuits believe that they can raise the rest of the money over the next three to five years. Once the $100 million goal is met, the group plans to forge ahead with fundraising until it hits the final goal of $1 billion.