Week 5

God Loves Blackness:

Unlearning Whiteness and Building Habits of Solidarity

America in Crisis

After the death of Michael Brown in the Fall 2014, Dr. Mark Medley listened to a Black student talk about the conversations he had with his two teenage sons to protect them from arrest or worse when stopped by police. Mark realized he did not have to say any of these things to his own teenage son because he had been racialized into Whiteness.

In this video, Mark  explains the terms “Whiteness” and “Blackness” in American society, and describes how this has shaped White Christianity to theologize Blackness and Black bodies as corrupt and inferior. In repenting and resisting this system, Mark talks about how to confess and unlearn Whiteness, and how to take the next step to turn away from Whiteness and toward Blackness.

To prepare for this session, please view the video and try the brainstorming assignment.

Week 5: God Loves Blackness: Unlearning Whiteness and Building Habits of Solidarity

Watch the video lecture (below) and then use the Zoom link below to join the live discussion at 7 pm EST on Tuesday, July 14. 

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Link to Live Zoom Session

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Session Video Lecture

Brainstorming Assignment: What are two to four ways you might be able to “incarnate solidarity” with Black persons and communities in your life and in your community? Please bring these imagined ways to class so we can have some conversation about concrete steps of solidarity. 

After the Session: Research, Action, and Reflection

Check this space for further research and activities to engage in your learning toward change after the class discussion. There are no grades! We to encourage you to try something new and learn from mistakes and successes. Let us know how it goes. Feel free to use the public question board to post your reflections or send a private note to the instructors.

Questions? Comments? Ideas?

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Dr. Lewis Brogdon

Research Professor of Preaching and Black Church Studies

Dr. Lewis Brogdon has served in numerous positions in undergraduate and graduate institutions as a professor including roles at Louisville Presbyterian Seminary, Claflin University, and Bluefield College. Brogdon is the author of several books including A Companion to Philemon (Cascade 2018), The Spirituality of Black Preaching (Seymour Press 2016), The New Pentecostal Message? (Cascade 2015), Dying to Lead: The Disturbing Trend of Clergy Suicide (Seymour Press 2015), Hope on the Brink (Cascade 2013) and No Longer a Slave but a Brother (Scholars Press 2013). He has authored numerous journal articles, book chapter essays and magazine articles.

Dr. Laura Levens

Assistant Professor of Christian Mission

Dr. Levens oversees course development and teaching for the department of Christian Mission at BSK. She teaches a Foundations of Christian Mission Course, exploring biblical, theological, and historical aspects of mission practice. She also teaches several mission elective courses based on student interest in topics like Social Justice, Global Christianity, Women’s Experience, Leadership and Wisdom, and Biblical Interpretation.

Dr. Levens is currently working on a book about the mission theology and practice of Ann Hasseltine Judson, one of the earliest American Baptist Foreign Missionaries to Burma. She is also currently working with Dr. Inscore Essick on a field research interview project with rural black churches in North-Central Kentucky.

Questions, Comments and Ideas

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Need to ask a question but do not wish for others in the course to see it?

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flourish courses

Flourish courses offer great learning opportunities around key topics designed to help equip church leaders for vibrant ministry. These short-term courses are offered online and are affordable.

upcoming courses

Additional Flourish Courses are coming! Plan to register for Introduction to the Bible, coming Fall 2020.