Join us on Tuesday, April 18, 2017 for CRCDS Distinguished Alumni/ae Dinner

CRCDS will present Distinguished Alumni/ae awards to four remarkable graduates on Tuesday, April 18, 2017 during the annual Distinguished Alumni/ae Dinner. The event begins at 5:30 p.m. in the Refectory. Tickets are $30 per person and may be purchased by calling (585) 340-9643 or by registering online at

(Members of the Classes of '67, '92 and '07 and '12 may attend free of charge).

Joan Devening Criswell (BMTS '51), Rev. Richard Myers (CRDS '91), Olgha Sandman (BMTS '52) and Dr. Granville A. Seward (CRDS '67) together and individually exemplify the core values of CRCDS, and have dedicated their lives in service to God and their fellow human beings.

Please join us in celebrating the accomplishments of these distinguished graduates as we give thanks for them and for the mission of CRCDS.




"When Will We Ever Learn?" by CRCDS President Dr. Marvin A. McMickle

In a recent "Unite Rochester" blog post regarding the recent attack on Syria by the United States, CRCDS President Dr. Marvin A. McMickle wrote:

"I am a devoted follower of the teachings of Martin Luther King, Jr. At the heart of those teachings is his view that racism, poverty, and militarism are the greatest obstacles to a democratic society. I was reminded of this "tri-partite" system of evil in light of the recent bombings of a Syrian airbase ordered by President Trump. The President said he was moved by the death of persons as a result of the use of chemical weapons. Granted, the death of nearly 100 persons by chemical weapons was horrific. However, it was the same Donald Trump who, as a civilian critic of President Obama repeatedly said that the US should never intervene in Syria even though over 400,000 Syrian civilians had already been killed by their own government through the use of conventional weapons. Is it the policy of the United States that the death of 400,000 Syrians by conventional attack is acceptable, while the death of 100 Syrians by chemical attack is unacceptable? What makes the attack ordered by Trump even harder to understand is that it did not hamper the war making capacity of the Syrian government. Our attacks have not in any way deterred them from using that very same air field for waging war against their own  people. No runways were destroyed. No war planes were destroyed. In fact, just two days later, the Syrian government used that same airfield to launch a conventional bombing attack against the same town they had attacked with chemical weapons last week.  While the news media spent the last 72 hours focusing our attention on the launching of 59 tomahawk missiles at a cost of $59 million, they have now come to realize that the Trump-ordered attack has changed nothing in Syria. Indeed, it may have made matters worse. One attack will not drive Basheer Al Hasad out of power in Syria, but it may provoke some unanticipated counter- attacks by Syria, Iran, Russia, and Hezbollah. Now comes the inevitable question: If Trump cares so much about the victims of chemical attacks in Syria, will he change his travel ban and allow into the US those Syrian refugees who survived that chemical attack and who are now trying to flee from that terrible war zone? Dr. King was right when he warned that war alone does not solve our problems. It just creates new problems that demand our response, consume our money, and endanger the lives of our military personnel. The world has become a much more dangerous place since the attack ordered by Donald Trump. Does he have a strategy for peace, or just "an itchy trigger finger?"

Register Today! CRCDS Spring Lectures & Reunion, April 17-20, 2017

CRCDS is proud to present the 2017 Spring Lectures and Reunion: "When I was in Prison…Restoring Dignity and Justice" on Monday, April 17 through Thursday, April 20, 2017.

Lectures are FREE and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. For more lecture week events including reunion, chapel services and meals please call 585-340-9643 or register online at


African American Legacy Lecture: Documentary & Conversation featuring the film, "13th". 

Monday, April 17, 2017     7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

This Academy-Award nominated film explores the history of racial inequality in the United States, focusing on the U.S. prison system and disproportionate incarceration of African Americans. Discussion following film.


Stanley I. Stuber Lecture: “Life Ain’t What It Used To Be, Part 1” —  Tuesday, April 18, 2017  1:30 pm-3:00 pm

Stanley I. Stuber Lecture: "Life Ain't What It Used to Be, Part 2" —   Wednesday, April 19, 2017    1:30 pm-3:00 pm

Speaker: Dr. Edward L. Hunt, Professor at New York Theological Seminary, is the former Director of the Professional Studies Program at the Sing Sing Correctional facility. A registered therapist and ordained Baptist minister, Dr. Hunt has worked with the criminally insane & troubled youth.

JC Wynn Lecture: “Building Social Movements In A Time Of Polarization”Wednesday, April 19, 2017    7:00 pm-8:30 pm

Speaker: Daniel Hunter, organizer and strategist with the activist training group Training for Change. His book, Building a Movement to End the New Jim Crow, is a complementary book to Michelle Alexander’s The New Jim Crow. This book will be  available for purchase.

Incarceration Panel Discussion: Part of CRCDS Spring Lectures, "When I was in Prison: Restoring Dignity & Justice"  

Thursday, April 20, 2017    10:30 am-11:45 am

Led by Dr. Joshua Dubler, Assistant Professor of Religion, University of Rochester

Panelists will examine and discuss contemporary and historical incarceration in the United States. Special emphasis will be placed on identifying concrete ways we can improve the current judicial system while addressing issues related to inequity and justice.

Panelists include: Rev. Daryl G. Bloodsaw (D.Min., CRCDS ‘17), Pastor,
First Baptist Church of Crown Heights, NYC, Thomas VanStrydonck,
Deputy Monroe County Executive and retired NYS Supreme Court
justice, and Rev. Karyn Carter, NYS Office of Child and Family Services
(CRCDS ‘00).

LGBT Lecture: “When Faith Kills: A Report From The LGBTQI Jamaican Front Lines”

Thursday, April 20, 2017     7:00 PM – 9:00 PM

Speaker: Maurice Tomlinson, Esq., Attorney and LGBTI human rights advocate. Mr. Tomlinson, a senior policy analyst with the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network, is active in LGBTI issues in his native Jamaica & challenges anti-gay laws in the Caribbean. In 2012, Maurice received the inaugural David Kato Vision and Voice Award, which recognizes individuals who defend human rights and the dignity of LGBTI people around the world.











Save the Date! Rochester Consortium of Theological Schools Preaching Conference: May 18, 2017

The Rochester Consortium of Theological Schools (a collaboration among St. Bernard's School of Theology & Ministry, Colgate Rochester Crozer Divnity School and Northeastern Seminary) presents their annual preaching conference on Thursday, May 18, 2017. This year's conference, entitled, "The Word Made Flesh," held this year at Roberts Wesleyan College in Rochester, New York will explore biblical texts as a means of enhancing and improving teaching and preaching skills.

Gail Ricciuti, CRCDS Professor Emeritus, and Barbara Moore, CRCDS Director of the Program for the Study of Women in Gender in Church & Society, and faculty associate for preaching and practical theology, are guest speakers.

To register or for more information, see:

CRCDS President Dr. Marvin A. McMickle: "Not the Republican Party I Once Knew"

CRCDS President Dr. Marvin A. McMickle recently submitted this opinion piece to the Rochester, New York Democrat and Chronicle:

All of my life I have known the values for which the Republican Party has stood. When I was growing up in Illinois my US Senators included Republicans like Everett Dirksen and Charles Percy. When I lived in New York City in the 1970s the mayor was John Lindsay, the Governor was Nelson Rockefeller, and one of the US Senators was Jacob Javits; all Republicans. When I was in New Jersey I was honored to offer the invocation at the inaugural of the new Republican Governor Thomas Kean. When I lived in Ohio I worked closely with George Voinovich, a Republican who served as Mayor of Cleveland, Governor of Ohio, and then as one of our US Senators.

As a lifelong Democrat myself, there were always areas of public policy with which I often disagreed with those Republican leaders; especially involving financing for services to the poor and marginalized. However, I never doubted their integrity, their intelligence, or their patriotism. I no longer see or hear from the Republican Party I once knew.

This change in the party cannot be blamed on Barry Goldwater in 1964 or the emergence of Ronald Reagan in 1976. I doubt that either of them could win a national election today if they ran as Republicans. This new Republican Party is xenophobic, anti-immigrant, unashamedly pro-Wall Street, and seems determined to use voter suppression and conspiracy theories to promote their political agenda.

No major Republican political leader has confronted Donald Trump on his attacks on traditional allies like Great Britain, Australia and Germany. They have been strangely silent about his repeated lies about the size of his electoral college win, or the size of his inaugural crowd, or the millions of illegal voters in the 2016 election, or his claim that thousands of people from Massachusetts voted illegally in New Hampshire, or his promise to prove that he was innocent of eleven sexual assault charges, or his recent outrage that the British Secret Service was somehow involved in wire-tapping Trump Tower at the direction of President Obama.

Instead, you hear Congressman Steve King of Iowa spewing venomous notions about “other people’s babies,” and Steve Bannon and Steve Miller directing Trump into an increasingly white nationalist agenda that is being regularly applauded by David Duke of the KKK. You hear Chris Collins of nearby Erie County supporting or defending every word that comes from the mouth of Donald Trump.

This is not the once proud GOP – the party of Abraham Lincoln. This is not the party of Dwight Eisenhower who warned against the military industrial complex. This is not the party of George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush who appointed Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice to be US Secretary of State.

We need a strong two-party system in our country, but we do not have one. The Democratic Party is devoid of new ideas and younger leadership. The Republican Party, either by consent or by silence, has lost its soul. In their song “Mrs. Robinson”, Simon and Garfunkel ask the question, “Where have you gone Joe DiMaggio?…Jolting Joe has left and gone away.”

The same seems to be true of what I remember about the Republican Party.

To read or share the piece online, click here: