From news release, November 11, 2016: “Why aren’t you mad yet?” was only one of the many questions asked at the inaugural Adventists for Social Justice Conference.
Beginning Friday night, November 4th, and concluding on Sunday morning, November 6th, more than 200 Seventh-day Adventists from as far as London, England and as near as Silver Spring, Maryland came together for this historic event to “learn to do good; seek justice, rebuke the oppressor; defend the fatherless, [and] plead for the widow” (Isa. 1:17).
Adventists for Social Justice (ASJ) is a non-profit organization dedicated to educating, encouraging and equipping Seventh-day Adventists to be channels who reflect Christ by doing social justice locally and defending oppressed communities. ASJ considers the social justice conference to be one of the organization’s integral initiatives that help Adventists move beyond charity work and into that of social justice.
The ASJ conference brought university professors, pastors and professionals together to provide a clear articulation of some of society’s larger problems, as well as innovative ideas to help guide attendees to potential solutions.
Themed “Pushing Past the Pew,” this year’s ASJ Conference focused its attention on racial injustice. The conference featured more than 25 workshop speakers and presenters from a variety of fields and educational backgrounds. Workshop topics included community development, racial reconciliation, the history of the Adventist church and activism and race in America.
The three keynote speakers were Dr. Charles Wesley Knight, professor of religion at Oakwood University; Pastor Joshua Nelson, senior pastor in the South Atlantic Conference of Seventh-day Adventists; and Minister Ronnie Vanderhorst, author and Co-Founder of Prepare Our Youth, Inc.
ASJ believes that when people are properly educated, encouraged, and equipped with the right tools they are able to effect the kind of radical socio-spiritual change Jesus Christ brought about during His time on this Earth.
The ASJ Conference believes it is their responsibility to inspire its attendees by presenting the theological basis for social justice, as well as providing a space for a variety of races and ethnicities to share stories and experiences, while also equipping its attendees with practical programs, initiatives, organizations, and events they can take back to their local communities to bring about lasting change.
The ASJ Conference is pleased to announce they have already begun planning for the 2017 social justice conference.
Organizers encourage everyone to keep a look out for more information in the near future.
In addition, they ask for your prayers as they continue to encourage the people of God to “seek justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with God” (Micah 6:8).
The news release was provided by Claudia Allen, coordinator of the ASJ Conference and Tiffany Llewellyn, ASJ co-founder.