CRCDS Board of Trustees Chair Bishop Jack M. McKelvey and CRCDS President Dr. Marvin A. McMickle on the decision not to indict in the death of Eric Garner

In the wake of the grand jury decision to not indict the police officer responsible for the death of Eric Garner in New York City, Chair of the CRCDS Board of Trustees Bishop Jack M. McKelvey and CRCDS President Dr. Marvin A. McMickle shared their thoughts with the Rochester, NY Democrat and Chronicle.

Bishop McKelvey’s letter to the editor is available online through the link provided below. For your convenience, the actual text is provided as well.

Dr. McMickle’s editorial was taken from his most recent Unite Rochester blog posting. The link to Dr. McMickle’s piece is available below along with the complete text.
FROM BISHOP JACK M. MCKELVEY

http://www.democratandchronicle.com/story/opinion/letters/2014/12/06/letter-garner-case-shows-video-evidence-issue/19967697/
In the wake of the grand jury decision regarding the Eric Garner case in New York City, one could raise the question as to why we need expensive police cameras in order to get justice. What more do we need than a video of action taken by police, a medical examiner's report and the verbal sounds of the victim saying "I can't breathe" to have the situation taken before a jury of the perpetrators peers? Does it not seem obvious that the issue is not video evidence, but rather how we come to decisions which allow the courts of law to act and justice to be done?
JACK M. McKELVEY
ROCHESTER
The writer is a retired Episcopal Bishop of the Diocese of Rochester.

FROM PRESIDENT MARVIN A. MCMICKLE
http://www.democratandchronicle.com/story/unite/2014/12/03/here-we-go-again/19862537/
Here We Go Again

In his book, The Souls of Black Folk, written in 1903, W.E.B. Du Bois said "The problem of the twentieth century will be the problem of the color line." As it happens, the problem of the color line has followed us into the 21st century with a pattern of white police officers using deadly force against unarmed black males in cities across the United States.
While the nation is still reeling from the decision in Ferguson, Missouri not to indict officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of Michael Brown, we have now heard that another white police officer in New York City will not be indicted in the death of Eric Garner.
The New York City Medical Examiner did an autopsy on his body and concluded that his death was "a homicide" caused by the use of an illegal choke hold that was banned by the New York City Police Department in 1993! This death played out on national TV for all the world to see. Eric Garner was unarmed. Eric Garner was suspected of selling loose cigarettes. Six police officers were involved in his take-down, and all six police officers doubtlessly heard Eric Garner say 11 times "I can't breathe."
No doubt some people will blame Eric Garner for this death, because they will say he was resisting arrest. Others will say he was guilty of selling loose cigarettes and not paying taxes. All of these issues could have been resolved if there had been an indictment that would have been followed by a trial where guilt or innocence could have been determined. Instead, the pattern continues of the death of unarmed black males being killed as a result of excessive force being used by white police officers.
For many black people, the words of Du Bois still seem relevant: The American problem is the problem of the color line. In the same book, Du Bois talked about his own feeling of "double consciousness" in which he felt the conflicts and limitations of being "an American and a Negro." That is the feeling that is spreading across black communities in this country with this string of deaths that are not even resulting in an indictment, much less a conviction.

We are, as always, grateful for the efforts of Bishop McKelvey and Dr. McMickle to elevate and inform public discourse, particularly on such a vitally important justice issue.

Fund for CRCDS surpasses its goal!

Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School is delighted to announce the 2013-14 Fund for CRCDS exceeded its goal of $348,000, raising a total of $368,375 for CRCDS!  The fund surpassed last year's annual fund by over $35k, a 10.5% increase!  This is the largest amount the school has raised since the 2006-07 fiscal year and is the third year in a row the fund has exceeded its goal.

In a show of unwavering support for CRCDS and its mission, 100% of the governing Trustees, staff and faculty contributed to the Fund for CRCDS, making this the third year in a row this mark was achieved.

The alumni and alumnae enthusiastically responded to the school's recent participation initiative, raising the alumni/ae participation rate for the annual fund from 16% in 2012-13 to 21% in 2013-14!   We are grateful for this level of commitment and are looking forward to building on this success in the coming year.

CRCDS is also pleased to report the school raised a total of $1,615,000 in philanthropic gifts during 2013-14.  This amount represents all financial gifts received by the school during the fiscal year including unrestricted gifts to the annual fund and restricted scholarship, endowment and estate gifts.  We are looking forward to sharing this success with our accrediting body, the Association for Theological Schools, during their fall accreditation visit.  Thank you for helping us present them with such positive news about the support for CRCDS!

Our sincere thanks to all of you who made the 2013-14 Fund for CRCDS and the entire 2013-14 fiscal year a great success.  Your generosity and prayerful support makes the CRCDS mission of preparing pastoral, prophetic and learned leaders possible.  On behalf of all our students and all of us who work diligently to ensure the success of the CRCDS mission, thank you.  Please know how grateful we are for each and every one of you and for all the ways you help promote and sustain CRCDS and its vital mission.

CRCDS Alumnus to be ordained

We are proud to announce the ordination of Arthur "Nick" W. Smith, CRCDS '13. Nick will be ordained by The Right Reverend Gladstone B. Adams III, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Central New York, on Wednesday, August 13, 2014 at Trinity Church in Fayatteville, NY.

The CRCDS community congratulates Nick as he begins a new chapter in his spiritual journey.