Tuesday Conversations S2E5 [video]: Diana Butler Bass, Lamar Hardwick, and Brian Allain, via Compassionate Christianity
A conversation about progressive Christianity today and its role in pursuing justice and healing our racial divides.
Dear #WhiteTooLong readers,
Last week I was out on my first writing retreat of 2020, beginning work on a new book, which examines four communities who are facing their troubling histories of racial violence and doing the work of truth-telling, commemoration, and repair. I’ll give you periodic updates as I write this year, and—God willing and the creek don’t rise—the book will be out fall 2023.
In the meantime, my previous post, “The Sacred Work of White Discomfort,” seems to have resonated among our #WhiteTooLong community here and beyond. It’s been read over 9,000 times and is the second most read piece of any I’ve written since kicking things off on substack last August (This November column remains the most read). ICYMI, let me invite you to read it and share it with two or three people in your circles. It’s here:
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Progressive Christianity Today and Its Role in Pursuing Justice and Healing our Racial Divides
For this installment of Tuesday Conversations, I’m bringing you a recent four-way discussion with me, Diana Butler Bass, and Lamar Hardwick, which was organized by Brian Allain, Founder of Compassionate Christianity. This panel was Episode 8 of a larger series on “Progressive Christian Voices: Today and Tomorrow.” You can find the full series here.
Click on the image below to tune into the conversation (60 minutes).
About the Panelists
Brian Allain owns Compassionate Christianity and leads the team of volunteers who contribute to it. He also leads Writing for Your Life, a resource center for spiritual writers, and provides marketing services for authors and companies through Who Are You Trying To Serve? His work includes the Publishing in Color conference series, which is intended to increase the number of books published by under-represented groups of spiritual writers. Previously Brian served as Founding Director of the Frederick Buechner Center where he led the launch of Mr. Buechner’s online presence and established several new programs and strategic partnerships. Brian has developed and led spiritual writers conferences at Princeton Theological Seminary, Western Theological Seminary, Belmont University, New Brunswick Seminary, and several churches. All of this is a second career, coming after successful business and technology leadership in high-tech.
Diana Butler Bass
Diana Butler Bass, Ph.D., is an award-winning author, popular speaker, inspiring preacher, and one of America’s most trusted commentators on religion and contemporary spirituality. Diana’s passion is sharing great ideas to change lives and the world—a passion that ranges from informing the public about spiritual trends, challenging conventional narratives about religious practice, entering the fray of social media with spiritual wisdom and smart theology, and writing books to help readers see themselves, their place in history, and God differently. She does this with intelligence, joy, and a good dose of humor, leading well-known comedian John Fugelsang to dub her “iconic,” the late Marcus Borg to call her “spontaneous and always surprising,” and Glennon Doyle to praise her “razor-sharp mind” and “mystical heart.” She holds a doctorate in religious studies from Duke University and is the author of eleven books, most recently Freeing Jesus: Rediscovering Jesus as Friend, Teacher, Savior, Lord, Way, and Presence (HarperOne 2021).
Raised in a military family, Lamar Hardwick has been privileged to travel the world at a young age with his siblings and parents. After graduating high school in El Paso, Texas, Lamar enrolled and attended Concordia University Wisconsin where he would meet his wife and eventually graduate with a BA in criminal justice. After graduation, Lamar relocated to Atlanta where he and his wife Isabella married in 2001. Lamar would go on to graduate with a Master of Divinity degree from Emory University as well as a Doctor of Ministry degree from Liberty University. Over the years Lamar has served as a youth pastor, hospice chaplain, football coach, and pastor but his most important role is serving his wife of 16 years and their three beautiful children ages 11, 8, and 3. In 2014, after years of silently struggling with social anxiety and sensory processing disorder, and a host of other significant issues, Dr. Hardwick was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. He was 36 years old when diagnosed. Dr. Hardwick has had articles published by various autism and disability websites such as The Mighty, The Huffington Post, Key Ministry, and The Autistic Self Advocacy Network. His articles and blogs can also be found on his website www.autismpastor.com. Dr. Hardwick is the author sever books, most recently Disability and the Church: A Vision for Diversity and Inclusion.