Next weekend, The Red Shoes and others will host a community weekend titled "Soulful Justice: Racial Identity Development as Lovingkindness," led by Christena Cleveland.
Cleveland, who holds a doctorate, is to deliver a message leading to a deeper understanding of race, equity, power and privilege from the vantage point of loving your neighbor. She weaves together the spiritual from many faith traditions and theory from her professional background as a sociologist.
Several organizations have joined to make the seminar available free, but a $20 donation helps provide more programs on these themes, The Red Shoes said.
The event opens at 7 p.m. Aug. 16 at Boudreaux’s, 2647 Government St., and East Baton Rouge Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome, will offer a greeting. Cleveland's presentation will run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Aug. 17 at BREC Milton J. Womack Park, 6201 Florida Blvd.
Cleveland has held faculty positions at several institutions of higher education — most recently at Duke University’s Divinity School. She is the author of "Disunity in Christ: Uncovering the Hidden Forces that Keep Us Apart."
“My passion is integration. I integrate justice and reconciliation, hope and lament, social psychology and theology, research and practice, pro-blackness and pro-humanity, truth and love, and contemplation and action. ... There is no longer us and them — but simply us,” she said.