Celebrating the life of Rosa Parks

Parks with the NAACP's highest award, the Spin...
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Today marks the fifty-five year anniversary of Rosa Parks refusing to move from her seat on a racially-segregated bus.  In some Christian communities, her actions that day were admired.  For others, however, even four decades later, her work went unappreciated.  Ed Gilbreath, in his text, Reconciliation Blues: A Black Evangelical’s Inside View of White Christianity tells a sad story (found on page 96) of Rose Parks being invited to speak at an evangelical Christian gathering in North Central Texas.  Then, the organizer (an African-American as well) found out that the banquet was canceled, out of concerns that Parks’ theology was “liberal.”  Of course, liberal can be a code word for “racial-progressive” but I’ll leave that to you to decide.

In addition to Google’s logo in Parks’ honor, Brian LePort and Justin Taylor, as well as Father Ernesto Obregon have excellent write-ups about her story. Check them out.

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0 thoughts on “Celebrating the life of Rosa Parks

  1. J. K. Gayle

    Thanks for this post! And once, you shared this one with me, so now I share it back:

    The need to act bravely has a long history in African American tradition. Phillis Wheatley’s published poems were scrutinized by Thomas Jefferson, Voltaire, and other (white) intellectuals of the day. Sojourner Truth challenged male-only suffrage of blacks, Jarena Lee pursued her God-given call to preach. Rosa Parks would not give up her seat on the bus.
    Just as the woman understood (“knew”) changes in her body, so Jesus recognized (“knew”) changes in his body.

    from Emerson B. Powery, “[The Gospel of] Mark,” True to Our Native Land: An African American New Testament Commentary.

  2. Jennifer

    Wonderful woman.

    By God’s grace, I “accidentally” came across the CD set of “A Knock at Midnight” at the library the other day. It consists of recordings of excerpts from some of MLK Jr’s key sermons including introductions provided by contemporary Christian leaders. The sermons usually end with the congregation singing a traditional hymn and when I listen, I feel like I’m being transported back in time into the church myself! Love it. 🙂

      1. Jennifer

        Good! I’m glad, though I must say actually HEARING him say the words add a certain power. It’s incredible how gifted a writer he was, and he was even a better speaker!

  3. Jennifer

    Re: Justin Taylor’s post

    I always find it noteworthy when a member of the Gospel Coalition chooses to honor a great WOMAN of history. The articles and overall layout of the TGC site (perhaps unintentionally) tends to promote the false notion that Christianity has a strictly male-dominated narrative. I hope to see essays and articles reflect the truth of history and give heed to the great female martyrs, evangelists, missionaries, (not to mention the great women of the BIBLE) who laid their lives down (and continue to lay their lives down) for the Gospel and the Kingdom of Christ in their respective generations.

    1. Rod of Alexandria Post author

      The reason why I put the note about Rosa Parks being rejected by Evangelicals in Texas was because of Justin’s post in particular.

        1. Rod of Alexandria Post author

          Yes, i was being ironic. When I saw Brian’s link to Justin, the book reference was the first thing that came to mind.


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