I find it quite ironic how being a Black American requires you to constantly cross over into whiteness while many white people have a problem with crossing over into Blackness. This is why so many white people only come to my community when there’s a game at the stadium or to attend a civil rights gathering every blue moon and then go back to their homes, churches, and schools in a different community. This is why so many whites who have lived in the Atlanta area for YEEEEEEARS still have never even heard of my community by name (the “AUC” or the Atlanta University Center). This is also why so few white people attend HBCUs, never heard of them (even the Black Ivy Leagues), or think that they are “only for Black people”... while we Black people are rewarded and honored for attending PWIs (especially white Ivy leagues). Also, consider how many white pastors you have seen serving as a senior pastor at a Black church vs. how many Black pastors you have seen at a white church. Whiteness doesn’t usually see itself in a context where it isn’t dominant... even when it calls itself “progressive”. It must have “a Black friend”... not be in a Black community or fully give room for Black culture to thrive... especially by means of financial support and resources. It may welcome a Black person among its ranks, but s/he must dare not be TOO Black as to make white people uncomfortable. It may even sanctimoniously say that “Black lives matter” while hardly financially supporting the institutions made by, sustained by, and that feed Black lives. It always has to dominate and everyone else must assimilate in order to be regarded as “well-educated”, “professional”, “normal”, “classically trained”, “truly American”, “a good Christian”, etc. I can’t count how many times I’ve seen my friends in the ministry accept part time salaries when their white counterparts receive full time salaries and then they are expected to be the source of all things Black for the congregation... an EXHAUSTING endeavor when you are the minority. When will we see that imperialistic Eurocentricity is xenophobia... and it is 👏🏿THE SEEDBED of the systemic racism of our country. However, to be a “good American” or a “good Christian”, I, a Black man, must act as though I do not see this reality... or at least not say it publicly. I’m so glad that Harriet Tubman, Frederick Douglas, Ida B. Wells-Barnett, James Baldwin, M.L.K., and Yeshua himself chose to speak truth to power... so for the sake of all the people who were killed merely because they looked like me, I chose to honor their lives and follow in their footsteps... because Black lives matter enough to not just write it on a sign or letter but to actually DO something about it.
Your Black Friend
By: Nicolas Pettye
#BlackLivesMatter #AllBlackLivesMatter #Love #Act #SpeakingMyTruthUnapologetically #TheMinistryOfTRUTH #SpeakTruthToPower #SpokenWordIsMyArt #SpokenWordIsMyArtivism #Artivism #iDontPanderToXenopobia #Xenophobia #NoMoreFragility
This Blog is to inform the Gammon community of Bishop James King resignation from his position as Bishop-in- Residence at Gammon Theological Seminary, effective June 15, 2020.
From Bishop King:
My reasons for resigning are propelled by the combination of my age, the desire to spend more time with family, and an intensely ever-growing passion to launch my corporation, Christlike World Ministries, Inc. in its fullest sense. This has been my dream prior to retiring in 2016 as an active bishop.
The dream and passion to nurture effective leaders emerged during my childhood and teenage years. This dream was reflected in the 2003 Bishop’s Leadership Institute in Kentucky and the 2011 Disciple Covenant Conference in South Georgia. My plans for the foreseeable future are to write, preach, teach, and develop resources to support making disciples of Jesus Christ.
Thanks for our time together while serving as Bishop-in-Residence at my alma mater, Gammon Theological Seminary. I solicit your prayers and support as we continue in ministry for the glory of God.
I am still developing my contacts but for now, you can reach me at the following:
Hello Beautiful People email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Facebook: @James King
Mailing Address: Christlike World Ministries, Inc.
P.O. Box 4199
Columbus, GA 31914
· Bishopking.org – is being updated.
I am trusting in the future that God has planned for us.
Atlanta, GA - On June 12, 2020, members of the North Georgia Conference of the United Methodist Church and the local chapter of Black Methodists for Church Renewal, Inc. came together to organize a peaceful protest. Members of all colors and ages gathered first on the steps of Central United Methodist Church to then march through several streets and end up outside of First United Methodist Church. It marked the first protest the North Georgia Conference had after demonstrations broke out across the nation over the past two weeks following the killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis Police officer.
Before the march began, members of the community, churches, and organizations had an opportunity to speak to the crowd. One woman shared her family story about how her uncle was brutally murdered by a white mob and her family has yet to receive justice.
As they were marching, they stopped at several key places like the Richard Russell building. Richard Russell was a longtime congressman and the building was named after him in 1972. Richard Russell had a deep loathing of black equality and his disdain for civil rights ran deeper. Of all, he fought the hardest for the repression of black Americans and the preservation of Jim Crow segregation. Why is the building named after him if systematic racism doesn’t exist?
The question that we asked was, Why are you here? At the end of the march, the Bishop of the North Georgia Conference had an opportunity to speak to the people. In her speech, she said, “There is nothing more dangerous than the use of the Bible to justify sin. There is nothing more dangerous than to attribute prejudice to God. And there is nothing more dangerous than to come face-to-face with our creator and have to ask why did you use the Bible to justify segregation.” We are here to let the world know that it’s time to change and we are here to make that change happen.
After talking with some of the protesters these are the following requests or actions that we should do next:
Let’s be the community God has called us to be. We have faith, we have hope, we are bringing justice.
Gammon taps Crawford as Interim President-Dean
ATLANTA – Gammon Theological Seminary has named the Rev. Dr. Joseph Crawford as its Interim President-Dean, beginning July 1, 2020. Dr. Crawford will succeed the Rev. Dr. Ken Walden, who will transition out of the president-dean role effective June 30, 2020.
“Dr. Crawford is a dedicated and knowledgeable Gammon alumnus who will lead our distinguished theological institution well in this time of transition,” said Bishop L. Jonathan Holston, chairperson of the Gammon Board of Trustees. “He has served with distinction both as a member of the Gammon Board of Trustees and as president of the Interdenominational Theological Center Board of Trustees.
"We are pleased Dr. Crawford has agreed to serve his alma mater until a permanent president-dean is elected.”
Dr. Crawford is entering the retired relationship in the North Georgia Conference of The United Methodist Church after serving in several significant capacities during his active ministry – most recently as pastor of Fort Street United Methodist Church in Atlanta.
The appointment of Dr. Crawford completes the first phase of work by the Gammon Board of Trustees’ Transition/Search Committee, which is chaired by Dr. Mackie H. Norris. The committee is well into its second phase – establishing the process and criteria to be used in identifying, recruiting, vetting and electing the next president-dean.
The open application period will begin June 15, 2020. Information about the application process will be available soon at gammon-itc.org. The Board of Trustees anticipates the election process will be complete in time for the President-Dean-Elect to be introduced at the 2020 Founders’ Day festivities in December.
In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, Gammon Theological Seminary communities gathered online to celebrate the accomplishments, impact, and perseverance of the Class of 2020.
On Tuesday event followed a digital celebration for Gammon graduates on May 12. Gammon conferred a total of 12 degrees this year, which included 11 Master of Divinity, 1 Doctor of Ministry degrees.
As we live in this current reality, we want to take time to recognize, honor, and celebrate you—the amazing students of the Class of 2020.”
We’ve seen the fruit of these gifts in our classrooms, in your contextual work, in worship, and in our daily exchanges—be it in the halls of this great seminary, or on Zoom calls. You have made an imprint on this school and we cherish it.
As we navigate through these unprecedented times, we want to remind you of the good that remains. Here at Gammon Theological Seminary we will continue to be the source for hope and support for the most vulnerable areas of our communities, as we adapt and change to ensure we keep our ministries running smoothly and safely as possible. We may not know what the coming hours, days, and weeks may bring, but we do know that your support will help us all get through and beyond this pandemic together.
With your support during this pandemic, we are able to keep students engaged through our online tutoring, stimulating activities, projects, and workshop empowerment through Zoom. Every dollar and every day counts. Your gift of any amount is greatly appreciated and will have an immediate impact on the people we serve
Sometimes challenging times expose emotional triggers. Many of us cope with those triggers differently, whether it’s avoidance, overindulgence or even anger.
The coping mechanism I’m most inclined to revert to is overworking. I throw myself so deeply into executing and achieving goals that I check off a list, one achievement after the next. I woke up early as usual, but this time I allowed myself an extended moment where I cried, I prayed, I worshiped, I gave God thanks and I embraced all THE FEELINGS. Then I got up, got dressed, put on a full face of make up with no where to go and adorned myself in my new fav tee from @ceoofmylife_ FAITH + HUSTLE.
Here’s your #nuggetfortoday Faith will take you places hustle can’t. In the midst of many uncertainties, I’m grateful for that assurance. Although, my hustle reaps results, FAITH sustains me, opens up both joy and doors beyond my imagination.
Family, we may not know what the future holds, what “normal” will look like after sheltering in place is over, or even if life as we once knew is even possible.
But we can choose, gratitude.
What are some of the healthy choices you are making to positively cope and lead well during these challenging times? Like, share, and comment below.
About 300 BMCR members heard several presentations and a dialogue about the protocol plan at their annual gathering March 4-7, in Kansas City, Missouri. All of those plans are momentarily on hold now that public health concerns about the coronavirus pandemic led to the postponement of General Conference, the denomination’s top lawmaking assembly, which was scheduled for May in Minneapolis.
The meeting’s theme was “It’s Time,” taken from 2 Corinthians 6:2.
Two of the seven bishops who addressed BMCR were involved in the protocol negotiations.
“There was give and take on all sides,” said Bishop LaTrelle Easterling, co-convener of the Ebony Bishops. She urged patience in getting the protocol passed to create a more progressive-centrist, post-separation United Methodist Church.
And she responded to concerns about whether institutional racism would be adequately reckoned with in that remaining denomination.
“When the new United Methodist Church is formed, that’s when every constituency and interest group needs to rise up and say, ‘Now’s the time for our voices to be heard. … We want to make sure we don’t continue any of the mistakes, deficiencies and sins that occurred with the prior denomination.
“How will power be dealt with in this new entity?” she asked. “How will we learn from the racism, sexism, ableism, homophobia? How will we learn from the ills that plagued us in our former judicatory? If you have to storm the stage at General Conference, that’s when I hope you will say, ‘We will not move forward until we are assured that priorities of this new denomination will include our priorities.’”
Other highlights included workshops on preparation for General Conference, proposed revisions to the United Methodist Social Principles, and how to “engage young adults and cultivate thriving congregations.”
The annual Black College Fund fundraising banquet featured the Philander Smith College Choir from Little Rock, Arkansas.
The caucus elected the Rev. Antoine “Tony” Love as its new chairperson, succeeding Deborah Dangerfield. Other top officers elected are Deborah Bass as vice chairperson, Gertrude Jarrett-Stewart as secretary and the Rev. Ouida Lee as treasurer.
Georgia Governor Brian P. Kemp has extended the shelter-in-place order for the state of Georgia. The order became effective Friday, April 3, 2020 at 6:00 PM and will now expire Thursday, April 30, 2020 at 11:59 PM.
The state of Georgia has implemented a new COVID-19 hotline to address your questions/concerns. The number is (844) 442-2681. If you believe that you are experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19 or have been exposed to the novel coronavirus, please contact your primary care doctor, an urgent care clinic, or your local federally qualified healthcare center.
In addition, Governor Kemp extended Georgia’s public health state of emergency through May 13, 2020 to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.