By AT News Team, April 6, 2015:   Andrews University, the flagship educational institution of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, is hosting a four-day conversation on race and justice in America (April 8-11). Nightly events will use various formats—panel discussion, film and presentations—to consider race issues within Adventism as well as the wider North American society.

This gathering comes approximately one month after Andrews University students held an event exploring the roots and future of racially divided conferences in eastern and mid-western regions of the United States.

To launch the Social Justice Summit on Wednesday night, a racially diverse panel of young men will share their experience of race and justice in America. “We keep talking about the experience of young men, but we rarely hear from them,” event planner and Andrews University social work professor Twyla Smith told Adventist Today.

A film on race and the criminal justice system will be screened on Thursday night. The New Jim Crow probes issues surrounding drugs and incarceration rates. The screening will end with a question-and-answer session and two brief student presentations on advocacy and related themes.

Steve Yeagley will speak for vespers on Friday night, addressing the question: How has the Adventist Church been involved, either positively or negatively, on the topic of race and justice in America? Yeagley is the assistant vice president of student life at Andrews University.

On Saturday afternoon Paul Buckley will speak about racial justice and Christianity. Buckley is assistant vice president at Colorado College and director of the Butler Center, which promotes diversity and inclusion on the school’s campus.

Following Buckley’s presentation, Andrews University students and faculty will present five break-out sessions. Smith told Adventist Today that break-out topics will include health outcomes for minorities, race consciousness, lessons from Ferguson (MO), developing legislation, and the relationship between privilege and micro-aggression.


  • Wednesday (April 8), Panel discussion, 7:00pm, Seminary Chapel
  • Thursday (April 9), Screening of The New Jim Crow, 7:00pm, Seminary Chapel
  • Friday (April 10), Race, Justice, and Adventism, 7:00pm, Pioneer Memorial Church
  • Saturday (April 11), Race, Justice and Christianity, 4:00pm, Seminary Chapel; 6:00pm Break-out Sessions

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