F. Willis Johnson

A pastor who helped guide the troubled community of Ferguson, Missouri, after the police shooting of Michael Brown will lead a workshop here on Saturday, Jan. 21.

The Rev. F. Willis Johnson, pastor of Wellspring Church and director of the Center for Social Empowerment in Ferguson, will facilitate "Strengthening Connection Through Conversation” from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Casual Worship Center of Broadmoor United Methodist Church.

The session at the church, 10230 Mollylea Drive, Baton Rouge, is sponsored by the Baton Rouge District of the United Methodist Church and is open to all clergy, laity and community members.

Through the workshop, Johnson aims to teach how to have healthy conversations about racial and social justice.

Johnson captured national attention in August 2014 because of his leadership following the shooting of Brown, an 18-year-old black man, by Darren Wilson, 28, a white Ferguson police officer.

“We have been looking for a way to promote healthy conversation, unity and understanding in light of the recent shootings in Baton Rouge,” said Ken Irby, district superintendent of the Baton Rouge District United Methodist Church. “Dr. Johnson’s ‘Strengthening Connection through Conversation’ workshop will show us models to foster understanding and improve race relations in our community.”

The cost of the workshop is $10, which includes a continental breakfast and lunch. Tickets can be purchased at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/strengthening-connection-through-conversation-roundtable-workshop-tickets-30906528258.

Johnson's new book "Holding Up Your Corner: Talking about Race in Your Community," also will be available for purchase and signing at the workshop.