Rev. Gail Ricciuti's Letter to the Rochester, NY Democrat and Chronicle

In the aftermath of a drive-by shooting in the city of Rochester, NY that killed three and wounded four on August 20, 2015, CRCDS Associate Professor of Homiletics Rev. Gail Ricciutti composed a Letter to the Editor promoting support for elected officials who advocate for gun control. Her letter (excerpted for length by the newspaper) is included here:

In the wake of yet more gun violence in Rochester – young, gifted lives snuffed out, torn from their families and our common future – outrage and heartbreak extend far beyond a few neighborhoods to thousands of us across the city.

To those who ask, "What can we do?" I’d suggest, for a start, informed exercise of your vote. We must elect (and maintain) political leaders with the moral courage to stand against the powerful gun lobbies in restricting access to firearms. It is admittedly debated that the Second Amendment was crafted not to guarantee a personal right of every modern individual to bear arms, but, given its 18th-century context, to insure," A well-regulated Militia . . . "

The role of firearms in the colonization of America and the "right" to have as many guns as one wants are unrelated issues in the 21st century!


Watch Dr. Barbara Moore's "Lectionary for Life" series online

A new season is here and with it comes a new series of lectionaries and sermons given by Dr.  Barbara A. Moore, Dean of the Program for the Study of Women and Gender in Church and Society and Professor of Preaching and Practical Theology.

To view Dr. Moore's Lectionary for September 2015, click here:

Click here to view Dr. Moore's September 2015 sermon:

CRCDS Welcomes New Students

Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School is proud to welcome an enthusiastic, gifted and diverse group of new and returning students to our one hundred and ninety ninth academic year at opening Convocation.

In thought-provoking remarks, CRCDS President Dr. Marvin A. McMickle reminded students, faculty and friends the importance of starting out a new academic year with a renewed focus on the precise mission of CRCDS. He said, "We are a school whose primary focus is training and equipping men and women for ministries of various types in the life of the church and the broader society. We are primarily in the business of empowering people to provide leadership to the church, the community and the global village. We do that with the expectation that such leadership will be informed and influenced by what students learn here."

A picnic on Strong Hall terrace was held immediately following Convocation. We hope you enjoy these pictures from the celebration and keep our newest students in your prayers.

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"Do All Black Lives Matter?" by Dr. Marvin A. McMickle

Please note: The most recent "Connections" e-blast incorrectly referenced a blog post written by Dr. Marvin A. McMickle.

"Black Lives Matter to Black People" written by James Simmons of Baber AME Church, was substituted for Dr. Marvin A. McMickle's post, "Do All Black Lives Matter?" We apologize for the error.

Dr. McMickle's blog is listed here. Please see the link below to comment on or share the article.

I am sympathetic and supportive of the movement known as Black Lives Matter. This movement initially emerged in response to the shooting death of Trayvon Martin by George Zimmerman in Florida. However, the movement took on an even larger visibility when it began focusing on the white police officers that shot and killed unarmed black males in Ferguson, MO; Cleveland and Cincinnati OH; North Charleston, SC and Charlotte, NC; as well as black people who died while in police custody in Staten Island, NY, Baltimore, MD and in a county jail in Texas. Those tragic deaths are deserving of every bit of outrage that the Black Lives Matter group has been expressing over the last calendar year. I say again that I am fully supportive of this group when they speak up about these cases of white-on-black homicide; even when they interrupt political candidates during their campaign speeches. However, I do have a question I want to raise with and about the Black Lives Matter movement which is “do black lives matter just as much when the shooter that ends a black life is also black? There is no doubt about the fact that the vast majority of shooting deaths of black people in this city and across this country are the result of black-on-black homicides. When those black-on-black homicides occur I would hope to see the same protests and public outcries that are predictable when a white police officer does the shooting. Black-on-black homicides have become common occurrences in cities and towns all across the country. No white persons are driving through black communities randomly shooting black people inside their homes or as they are walking down the street or sitting on a park bench. In 99% of the cases, those are black-on-black homicides resulting from gang feuds, turf wars, drug deals or random acts of senseless violence. If white-robed members of the KKK or self-described white supremacists were involved in these actions there would be swift and universal condemnation both within the black community and across the country. However, black people are killing one another at a near epidemic level, and it has not yet generated any response from the Black Lives Matter movement or other people across this country. Do black lives only matter when the killer is white, or do black lives matter just as much when the killer is black? The identity has not yet been determined of the person who opened fire on August 19th near Genesee Street here in Rochester who shot seven people killing three of them. It should be hoped that the Black Lives Matter movement and all of us in Rochester will express our outrage and demand justice whether the shooter is proven to be black or white. Three black lives have been killed here in Rochester, and many more have been killed in the very cities across this country both before and after a white police officer was involved in shooting a black victim. If Black Lives Matter is to have any integrity as a movement or as a phrase then it must be shown that black lives matter just as much when some black lives are ended by other black people. This may not be a popular thing for a black person like me to say in this public forum, but I believe this to be the truth and it must be said!

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