Jimmy Carter says the United States is experiencing "a resurgence of racism" and he's calling on Baptist faith leaders to foster change in their communities.

The former U.S. president spoke Thursday at a summit hosted by the New Baptist Covenant, which he convened in 2007 to unite Baptists. Carter's keynote address came during a three-day summit in Atlanta aimed at creating partnerships between black and white churches.

Carter says some white Americans stay quiet when they see racism or discrimination, fearful of losing a "position of privilege" in society.

Carter's is a lifelong Baptist and often spoke about his faith during his political career. Now 91, he continues to teach Sunday school lessons several times a month at a church in his hometown of Plains, Georgia.