“Not the Church’s Advantages, But the City’s Disadvantages”

Stephen R. Haynes

in The Last Segregated Hour

Published in print November 2012 | ISBN: 9780195395051
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780199979288 | DOI:
“Not the Church’s Advantages, But the City’s Disadvantages”

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This chapter explores the history of Second Presbyterian Church in Memphis after the kneel-in crisis that engulfed the church in the mid-1960s. Its focus is the ways the church has acknowledged and sought to address its exclusion of African Americans from the church at that time. The chapter traces the church's emphasis on urban ministry and racial reconciliation in Memphis, particularly since the 1990s. The chapter tells the story of Second Presbyterian's failed attempt to partner with an African American congregation to found an interracial congregation at Clayborn Temple, former home of Second Presbyterian and later headquarters for the Sanitation Workers' strike of 1968. It concludes by highlighting external and internal perspectives on the church's efforts to address the problems of racial injustice and alienation.

Keywords: Second Presbyterian Church; urban ministry; racial reconciliation; Clayborn Temple; African Methodist Episcopal Church

Chapter.  9622 words. 

Subjects: Religious Studies

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