Speaker challenges community to engage in conversation over racism

KNOXVILLE—Tuesday members of the Christian community at the University of Tennessee and a few Johnson students and faculty came together to address the issue of racism in today’s culture.

The event took place at 7 p.m. at Calvary Baptist Church.

Mark Charles presented a challenge for Christians to learn the history of racism and called on them to enter a time of lament and conciliation.

“For this audience my goal was to bring them into a place of lament,” he said. “If the church goes into lament, then we have a better chance at making some deep systemic changes.”

The night included a talk on the issue of racism and God’s call for all people to actively engage in the issues they face in their world.

Charles is a speaker, writer and consultant who recently moved to Washington D.C.

During the event, Charles addressed issues regarding history, race, culture and faith.

“This isn’t about signing a petition, joining a march or giving money,” he said. “This is about having a dialogue our nation has avoided for 500 years”.

Charles serves as the Washington D.C. correspondent and columnist for Native News Online and is the author of the popular blog  Reflections from the Hogan.

He also serves on the board of the Christian Community Development Association and consults with the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship.

The talk was followed by a time of lament, prayer and discussion.

Click the video below to see highlights from Charles’ message.



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