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Interdenominational Theological Center

A joyous and musical celebration of life for a PC(USA) gem, Dr. Melva Wilson Costen

Over her long career in higher education and in hymnody, Dr. Melva Wilson Costen taught her students that music is a gift from God that can lift our spirits and serve as a refuge during difficult times. “It speaks,” said the Rev. Addie Peterson, eulogizing Costen at Central Presbyterian Church in Atlanta, “when we don’t know the words to say.”

Stated Clerk of the PC(USA)’s General Assembly celebrates the life and legacy of MLK with a rousing and prophetic talk

The Rev. Dr. J. Herbert Nelson, II noted that the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. celebrated his final birthday on Jan. 15, 1968, helping to plan the Poor People’s March that he would not live to see. Meeting in the basement of the historic Ebeneezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, King’s staff presented the civil rights leader with a birthday cake and a few gag gifts. “They cut his birthday cake and they laughed for a while,” said Nelson, Stated Clerk of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), “and then he said, ‘Let’s get back to work.’ On his last birthday he reminded us there is still work to be done.”

Investing with impact

Add churches — and more and more Black churches — to the list of organizations that are seen by social impact investors as financial anchors in their neighborhoods and communities.

Addressing race and reparations

Last week the Special Committee on Racism, Truth & Reconciliation hosted  conversations with the Rev.  Dr. Mark Lomax, founding pastor of First Afrikan Presbyterian Church in Lithonia, Georgia, and Dr. William Yoo of Columbia Theological Seminary around race, church history and reparations.

The Rev. Darius Swann dies at age 95

The Rev. Darius Swann, the lead plaintiff in a landmark Supreme Court case, Swann v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education, died March 8 at the age of 95.

Racism, a ‘spirit fueled by hatred and fear’

Racism, the Rev. Dr. Mark Lomax told staff and guests at the Presbyterian Center on Wednesday, the actual birthday of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., is a spirit fueled by hatred and fear, a spirit born of a lie “that you and I, fellow Christians, refuse to address. You and I live into the lie to this very day.”

Presbyterian Center prepares to celebrate MLK’s life and work

National staff of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) will celebrate the life and legacy of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., from 9 a.m. through 11 a.m. on Jan. 15 during a special worship service in the Chapel at the Presbyterian Center.

Enriching the life of the church through global music and theological education

As a professor of music and worship at the Interdenominational Theological Center (ITC) in Atlanta, she shared the music of the world with future pastors and others. Melva, now retired, brought this passion to her work as a member of the committee that produced the first hymnal of the newly reunited Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)