This week, People For Foundation’s African American Ministers Leadership Council is co-sponsoring the Harambee* celebration at Howard Divinity School.
Yesterday, I had the opportunity to attend one of the panels we sponsored, “Homophobia in the Black Church.” It was, if I do say so myself, pretty great.
The event is part of AAMLC’s ongoing work to target homophobia in the Black Church. And while it would be nice to say that everyone was in complete agreement on the subject, that would also be a little dull. That wasn’t a problem yesterday.
Instead, there was a rich and respectful conversation about homophobia, sexuality, history, theology, and the role religion to plays in our Democracy. (Which stands in stark contrast to the deception and fear mongering that the Right has used to exploit divisions on the issue.)
The panel was moderated by Rev. Tony Lee, Senior Pastor of Community of Hope AME Church in Temple Hills, MD, and featured:
- Rev. Dr. Kenneth L. Samuel, Senior Pastor of Victory for the World (Stone Mountain, Ga.) and Vice Chair of the African American Ministers Leadership Council
- Donna Payne, Associate Director of Diversity, Human Rights Campaign
- Rev. Byron Williams, syndicated columnist and pastor of the Resurrection Community Church in Oakland, CA.
- Rev. Dr. Ronald Hopson, psychologist and ordained minister. Dr. Hopson holds a joint appointment as a professor with the Howard University Department of Psychology and the School of Divinity.
- Rev. Osagyefo Uhuru Sekou, Fellow in Residence at the Brooklyn Society for Ethical Culture
We had a sizable crowd, but if you weren’t able to attend, fear not: we’ll be releasing a transcript of the event in the near futures, and the conversation will be continuing throughout the year.
(* – "Harambee" is the Kenyan tradition of community self-help. In case you were wondering.)