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:

Black Lives Matter to Black People by Dr. Marvin A. McMickle

CRCDS President Dr. Marvin A. McMickle composed the following piece as part of the Rochester, NY Democrat and Chronicle's Unite Rochester blog:

On Thursday, August 20, 2015, the precious blood of Raekwon Manigault, Jonah Barley, and Johnny Johnson was spilled in our streets and four others were wounded in a cowardly drive-by shooting.  Because the seven victims are black and the assailant is presumed to be black, numerous people have since commented that black people must learn how to love themselves and take personal responsibility for our community’s condition; as if black behavior is worse than the behavior of other races or black people only care when crime is white-on-black.

Each week rallies, marches, cookouts and prayer circles that protest violence, encourage persons to report crimes and build community are held in the City of Rochester because black people care about our community.  Each week community organizations, nonprofits and churches mentor children, volunteer in schools, distribute supplies and preach self-determination and pride because black people care about our community.  Rise Up and Roc the Peace Fest, Yolo’s Stop the Violence walks, Stop the Violence Basketball Tournament, multiple weekly prayer circles and other events are held because black people care about our community.  Black lives do matter to black people.

Did you know that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) 2013 Uniform Crime Report indicates that 83% of white people were killed by other white people (white-on-white crime)?  Did you know that numerous studies state that poverty and economics influence crime (not race)?  Did you know that most crime is segregated because our communities are segregated?  In other words each race, not just black people as media and commentators often spotlight, must mobilize in order to address crime.   Each race must teach our children to “love themselves.”  Each race must work to make the world a better place.

Black lives do matter to black people.  Matter-of-fact, black lives matter so much to black people that numerous people work each week to empower our community to establish and maintain a nonviolent culture (more often than not without press coverage).  Black lives matter so much to black people that numerous people work each week to address institutions and policies that discriminate against and dehumanize black life.  Black lives matter so much to black people numerous black people work to address institutional racism and address intra-communal violence at the same time.

Yes, black lives do matter to black people.

To share or comment on the article online, click here: http://blogs.democratandchronicle.com/unite/2015/08/29/black-lives-matter-to-black-people/

 

 

 

Dr. Marvin A. McMickle discusses the Voting Rights Act

CRCDS President Dr. Marvin A. McMickle recently submitted this entry to the Rochester, NY Democrat and Chronicle's Unite Rochester blog:

Fifty years ago the passage of the Voting Rights Act signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson offered a promise of the end of all the voter suppression tactics aimed primarily at African American voters ranging from literacy tests, to poll taxes, to outright intimidation. The Voting Rights Act also offered the hope of a substantially increased African American electorate whose newly expanded access to the political process would alter the American political landscape over time.

Fifty years later the most important section of the Voting Rights Act was thrown out by the U.S. Supreme Court; the section that required prior approval by the Justice Department or a Federal District Court judge to any changes in voting rules for ten states that had the most sever voter suppression against African Americans prior to 1965. Immediately after that ruling by the court most of those ten states joined by other states with largely Republican dominated state legislatures have reintroduced new voter suppression laws. They include showing government-issued IDs, restrictions on early voting , limits to same-day registration, and attempts to end Sunday voting which became extremely successful in the 2008 and 2012 election cycles. All of these changes were cloaked in language about preventing voter fraud even though some of the states that adopted these rules could not point to a single instance of voter fraud dating back twelve years.

Equally troubling is the fact that while voter suppression tactics are going up,
black voter participation is going down in all but the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections when Barack Obama was on the ballot. It is important to remember that all of the events in Ferguson, Missouri could have been avoided if black voters who are the population majority had voted higher than the 14% that voted in the last several local and state elections. The presence of a white mayor, a white police chief, a white district attorney and a 90% white police force were a direct result of black residents who either did not register or did not vote. Those political dynamics were as responsible for the death of Michael Brown as the bullets fired from Daryl Wilson' gun. Black citizens of Ferguson quickly realized this problem, and as a result of the last election cycle they now have a black mayor and a black police chief. Black lives matter, but so do black voters!

Fifty years later the issue of voting rights and increasing voter suppression is back in the news, but so is the problem of declining black voter participation. The Voting Rights Act provided access to the voting booth, but it did not and cannot mandate or motivate people to exercise that right. With the 2016 election season already underway the outcome may well be determined by these two trends; an increase in voter suppression by some states and a self-imposed decrease in black voter participation. I am hoping for a reversal of both trends.

Dr. Jin Young Choi delivers insightful, moving lecture at The Chautauqua Institute

Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School's Assistant Professor of New Testament and Christian Origins, Dr. Jin Young Choi, delivered a very moving and well-received lecture, "Mother Tongue is My Refuge" at The Chautauqua Institute on July 16, 2015.

Dr. Choi's lecture was part of a week-long focus on immigration and those living on the margins in U.S. society entitled, "For We Were Strangers in a Strange Land."

To read an article related to Dr. Choi's lecture, please click here:

http://chqdaily.com/2015/07/18/choi-lend-voice-to-the-voiceless-to-perceive-mystery-from-the-margins/

Jin Young Choi, Assistant Professor of New Testament and Christian origins at Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School, speaks to the afternoon crowd at the Hall of Philosophy.

Jin Young Choi, Assistant Professor of New Testament and Christian origins at Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School, speaks to the afternoon crowd at the Hall of Philosophy.