Friday and Saturday, The Red Shoes joins community partners to host "Soulful Justice: Racial Identity Development as Lovingkindness," led by Christena Cleveland.
Cleveland, who holds a doctorate, is committed to social action and spiritual vigor, a news release said. She is passionate about creating a more equitable and inclusive world by nurturing skillful justice advocacy.
Her message leads to a deeper understanding of race, equity, power and privilege from the vantage point of loving your neighbor, the release said. She weaves together the spiritual from many faith traditions and theory from her professional background as a sociologist. The program provides building blocks to build a safer, stronger community of Baton Rouge.
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 is from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Aug. 16 at Boudreaux’s, 2647 Government St. East Baton Rouge Parish Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome, who has heard Cleveland speak, will offer a greeting at event. From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Aug. 17, the event will continue 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. In pursuit of a new reality in which all people have an empowered seat at the table, and there is no longer us and them – but simply us,” she said.