This seminar series presented by Gibbel Kraybill & Hess attorney J. Dwight Yoder in collaboration with Reverend Edward M. Bailey and Dr. Danielle Brown of Bethel AME Church has been exploring the legal and historical context of slavery and racial discrimination in the United States.
Often referred to as America’s “original sin,” the kidnapping of Africans, who were then taken to the United States where they were enslaved and treated as property, represents one of the most tragic and inhumane parts of our country’s history. Our founding document – the United States Constitution – preserved and protected slavery as an institution. Even after slavery was abolished by the adoption of the 13th Amendment during the Reconstruction Era following the Civil War, discrimination, organized violence and systemic oppression against African-Americans continued. This discrimination was legalized by the states, encouraged by the federal government and sanctioned by the courts. The systemic and institutional nature of slavery and racial discrimination has caused great disparity in our country between Blacks and Whites that continues to manifest itself in many different ways.
Over the past three years, there have been many large group seminars reviewing key historical events and facts from our country’s history of slavery and discrimination followed by small group discussions. The small group discussions require participants to review assigned materials in advance to be able to engage in meaningful discussion on a specific topic. With the onset of Covid-19, the large group presentations and small group seminars have been conducted virtually, which can be viewed on GKH’s YouTube page.
We are pleased to announce the next seminar in this ongoing series that will explore the history of Christianity in America and some of the reasons for the separation of the Black and White church. We will explore the pivotal roles that the Black Church played in historical settings as well as following the through-line of the relationship of black and white churches since the birth of our nation to present day.
We are honored to be joined by Reverend Mark Tyler, Ph.D. Dr. Tyler currently serves as the 52nd pastor of Mother Bethel Methodist Episcopal Church in Philadelphia, which is the first congregation founded by Bishop Richard Allen, and has been a spiritual, social, and community force since the late 1700s. Dr. Tyler continues the legacy of Bishop Allen in ensuring that that pulpit of Mother Bethel remains a voice for the voiceless and a beacon of hope for the African Diaspora. Dr. Tyler is active in theological education and currently serves as a Fully Affiliated Faculty Member at Methodist Theological Seminary in Ohio. In addition to being a documentary film maker, Dr. Tyler also serves as one of the directors of the POWER (Pennsylvanians Organized to Witness, Empower, and Rebuild) LIVE FREE campaign, which was instrumental in bringing about the historic Citizen’s Police Oversight Commission in Philadelphia. We look forward to learning from his wealth of experiences and expertise.
To be able to participate and ask questions in this seminar, you must pre-register through Zoom. Please be advised that the seminar, including the question and answer session, will be recorded and posted on the internet for viewing by the general public. By preregistering, you consent to your participation in the seminar being included as part of the recording that will be posted to the internet following the seminar.