Sekou (center) and protestors in Ferguson.An upcoming Dean’s Lecture at Candler School of Theology will explore race relations and the events in Ferguson, Missouri, presented by the Rev. Osagyefo Sekou. The lecture, titled "The Liberation Theology of Ferguson," will take place on Wednesday, April 8, from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. in room 252 of Candler's Rita Anne Rollins Building. A free boxed lunch will be provided those who register by April 1. Register here.

A native of St. Louis, Missouri, Sekou is a Freeman Fellow at the Fellowship of Reconciliation, an international and interfaith organization founded at the start of World War I. In August 2014, he traveled to Ferguson, where he trained hundreds of protestors in nonviolent civil disobedience. While there, Sekou was arrested twice: once for praying in front of riot police, and later while co-leading a group of religious leaders on Moral Monday.

Sekou’s written reflections on his Ferguson experience include “And the Young Ones Shall Lead Them: The Ferguson Rebellion and the Crisis in Black Leadership” (co-authored with Dr. Cornel West) in Ebony, “The clergy’s place is with the protesters in Ferguson” on Al Jazeera America  and “The Gospel is Not a Neutral Term” on the website Medium. He is also the author of two essay collections, urbansouls (Urban Press, 2001) and Gods, Gays, and Guns: Essays on Religion and the Future of Democracy (Campbell & Cannon Press, 2012), and the forthcoming Riot Music: British Hip Hop, Race, and the Politics of Meaning (Hamilton Books, 2015).

Raised in the rural Arkansas Delta, Sekou is a third-generation ordained elder in the Church of God in Christ (Pentecostal). In addition to being a Freeman Fellow, he has served as the founding director of Clergy and Laity Concerned about Iraq, Scholar in Residence at Stanford University’s Martin Luther King Education and Research Institute, and Senior Advisor on Urban Public Policy for Dennis Kucinich’s 2004 presidential campaign. He is a professor of preaching at the Seminary Consortium of Urban Pastoral Education (SCUPE) in the Graduate Theological Urban Studies Program in Chicago, Illinois.

Sekou has studied continental philosophy at the New School, systematic theology at Union Theological Seminary, religion at Harvard University, and lectures throughout the country and abroad. In February 2015, he was named a 2015 NAACP History Maker.