Reverend Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr. is one of the most widely acclaimed black preachers in the United States. Combining social concern, spiritual growth, and political activism, Wright, who preaches in the tradition of the black church, brings a message of hope, redemption, and renewal. In 1972 he became pastor of Trinity United Church of Christ, a small congregation in Chicago's inner city. After over 30 years in the pulpit, his congregation has grown to 10,000 and is the largest United Church of Christ congregation in the United States.
Dr. Wright combined his studies of African Traditional Religions, African music, African American music and the African American Religious Tradition with his studies of Judeo-Christian thought to create ministries which addresses the needs of the community and enriched the lives and faith of his congregants by moving ministry, as stated in his own words, “from theory to praxis.”
Dr. Wright said in a published article: “I have tried to bring those two different worlds together [the academy and the pew] in the context of pastoral ministry in an effort to move an ignored people from hurt to healing and from hate to hope. My mission at Trinity has been to bring those worlds together by using the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the life of Christ as a model for what is possible, of what might be, and of what our faith really is—‘the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen.”
Dr. Wright’s efforts made Trinity – long considered, in theological circles, a model for the Black church – one of the most politically active and socially conscious churches in the nation. When he retired the church had over 50 active ministries with social justice advocacy at the core of its theological perspective.
Dr. Wright shares his life and his ministry with his wife, Rev. Ramah Reed Wright, and is the father of four daughters and one son. He has three grandchildren.
Dr. Jeremiah Wright, Jr. will participate in the Stanley I. Stuber Lecture discussion following Ms. Jean Zaru's speech beginning at 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 24, 2014.
Dr. Wright presents the African American Legacy Lecture on Thursday, April 24, 2014 at 7:00 p.m. at Aenon Baptist Church, 175 Genesee Street, Rochester NY 14611.
Books written by Dr. Wright that are available in the CRCDS bookstore:
The Book of Jeremiah: The Life and Ministry of Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr. by Susan Williams Smith. Cleveland: Pilgrim Press, 2013. $16.00
This book examines Wright as a man, African American, patriot, scholar, prophet and pastor. The relevance of his ministry extends far beyond his pastorate at Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, reaching a global stage with a message of liberation and justice.
What Makes You So Strong? Sermons of Joy and Strength by Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr. edited by Jini M. Kilgore. Valley Forge: Judson Press, 1993. $12.00
Preached as part of an annual series of services commemorating the life, work, and theology of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., these sermons, made wildly popular through radio broadcasts and personal appearances, have been raised to the status of "classic." Editor Jini M. Kilgore has included study questions, adding a dimension of interaction to the powerful messages so many have enjoyed.
Good News! Sermons of Hope for Today's Families by Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr. Valley Forge: Judson Press,1995. $10.00
Wright preaches hope and challenge to ALL family members: married, single, parents, children, accepted and outcast. Never one to shy away from controversy, Dr. Wright sheds new light on some of the most vulnerable and troublesome spots Christians find themselves in: family settings. In his inimitable style, Dr. Wright uses candor, wit and unmistakable power to convey the message to everyone that "God has some good news for you."