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Pastoring during protest

A conversation with three Presbyterian clergywomen

from Presbyterians Today | Special to Presbyterian News Service

A trio of Presbyterian clergywomen convened by the Rev. Samuel Son, manager of diversity and reconciliation at the Presbyterian Mission Agency, discussed how they’ve done ministry during recent protests, one of which is pictured above. (Photo by Clay Banks, Unsplash)

LOUISVILLE — The Rev. Samuel Son, manager of diversity and reconciliation at the Presbyterian Mission Agency, recently held a roundtable discussion with three Presbyterian clergywomen to discuss the challenges and opportunities of leading a congregation during protests and pandemic.

Protests have risen across the cities of America and the world, declaring ‘there’s no peace without justice,’ and saying the names of ones murdered,” Son said. “When reading these news stories, I heard the Pentecost story in a new light, a group of 120, mouths lit by the fire of the Holy Spirit,  going out into the street, disrupting a national holiday, saying the name of #Jesus, who was unjustly killed not more than 50 days ago in those very streets.

“I invited three pastors to share their perception of these protests and the complexity of leading a congregation and a city during protests and a pandemic. They lead multi-racial congregations, and in America, that means, as sociologist Korie L. Edwards says, dealing with racial justice.

“They are pastors who are always navigating the complex terrain of race. By the end of my time with them, I arrived at a place I didn’t expect. They are one of the most important theological and pastoral voices to listen to.”

Joining Son for this hour-long discussion, found here, were:

Among their quotes:

“Personal conviction should not be church policy.”

“Prophetically there has never been peace in this land since white colonist came and started the campaign of genocide.”

“White Supremacy is a system white people made and white people need to dismantle.”

“Telling the congregation where I am and not where they should go.”

“Total depravity not just an abstract doctrine…it’s a theological framework that helps us to sit with that discomfort.”

“Humility is important at this moment.”

“I really despise the word being woke.”

“More than being good I want there to be change.”

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