Guest Profile

Kathleen Eichenlaub

I was born and raised in Baltimore, lived in Los Angeles for 14 years, and have lived in northern Virginia since 2008. I received my B.A. in Psychology, along with a minor in business, at Washington College; then attended Loyola College for an M.A. in Counseling Psychology. I had a passion for teaching, however, so I became a Pre-K, Kindergarten, & First grade teacher for 5 years; then I was a corporate trainer for 4 years. Since having my first child in 2000, I have been doing a lot of volunteer work. In addition to volunteering at my children's schools and for their various activities, I have been a mentor to young women for 33 years, and continue to do so. I have done volunteer work at each church we've attended for the past 22 years, including teaching, attending 3 U.S. missions trips, and leading a mission trip. It was several years ago that God put antiracism on my heart. I learned very soon after that that the church we've been attending since 2008, St. David's Episcopal Church, was starting a Becoming Beloved Community class. Becoming the Beloved Community, is a concept popularized by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to represent his vision for a society lifted up in racial harmony. The Episcopal Church launched the Becoming Beloved Community framework in 2017, and is part of their long-term commitment to racial healing, reconciliation, and justice. I took the class "knowing" I wasn't a racist, but the class really opened my eyes to racist beliefs I didn't know I was holding; the racism that still exists today; as well as systemic racism. I was humbled and grateful to become part of the amazing leadership team for St. David's Becoming Beloved Community. I recently completed the Episcopal Church's 10-week class, On Sacred Ground, a film- and readings-based dialogue series on race, grounded in faith. We walked through chapters of America's history of race and racism; and though open to all, it is especially designed to help white people talk to other white people about racism. I have learned so much the last several years, yet have so much more to learn, and practice. Working to dismantle racism, and to do what I can to heal the trauma caused by racism, is my passion