Race, Reconciliation and Reformation

On the heels of the Big Tent conference in St. Louis, the ongoing PC(USA) Facing Racism campaign offers resources from the event with the theme “Race, Reconciliation and Reformation.” The conference emphasized the hope of the gospel and its power to transform society in our current cultural context marked by anxiety, racial division, political animosity and economic inequality.

Big Tent Bible Study

Over a two day period at Big Tent, Eric D. Barreto, Ph.D, of Princeton Theological Seminary invited participants to explore the book of Acts, with a focus on Pentecost, the Ethiopian Eunuch, Peter & Cornelius, with a brief trip into Luke.    

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Big Tent Liturgy

Hundreds of Big Tent participants gathered in the chapel on Washington University’s campus for worship services honoring the conference theme, “Race, Reconciliation and Reformation.” The opening and closing worship programs may be found here.  

The Reverend Dr. J. Herbert Nelson, II, Stated Clerk of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), presided over opening worship services. His sermon, When Our Backs Are Against the Wall, was carried on Facebook Live and may be viewed here.  https://vimeo.com/224675372

 In the New Testament, Jesus shared the Parable of the Sower with his disciples. In that story, Jesus explains that as the sower sows the seeds, some may fall on rocky ground or among the thorns, while other seeds flourish in rich soil. In her sermon at the closing worship for Big Tent, the Rev. Dr. Christine Hong, assistant professor of Educational Ministry at Columbia Theological Seminary, asked attendees to focus on reconciliation as they returned to their homes.


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Study Guide

This study titled Shifting Accountability for Racial Ethnic Ministries in the PC(USA) from Variety to Equity guide is meant to help Presbyterians engage in conversations to end structural racism and move toward racial equity in the church and in our society. The guide comes from an action of the 222nd General Assembly (2016) of the PC(USA) in response to the report of the Churchwide Conversation on Race, Ethnicity, Racism and Ethnocentricity. That action directed the Office of the General Assembly, the Presbyterian Mission Agency, and the Board of Pensions to host a series of regional conversations using the study guide.  

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