Channing Brown began her journey as a racial reconciler in college with an experience called Sankofa — a three-day bus trip exploring black history sites throughout the south. On this pilgrimage, she came face-to-face with her own history, shared the experience with others, and — for the first time in her life — watched friends become transformed by learning about African American history and racism.
Channing Brown earned a master’s degree in social justice from Marygrove College in Detroit. Building on her Sankofa experience and the foundation of her graduate work, she has directed a short-term missions site on the west side of Chicago, creating interactive opportunities for youth to engage issues of poverty and injustice.
She also served on staff with Willow Creek Community Church, developing strategies and programming around multiculturalism. Currently, she serves as resident director and multicultural liaison for Calvin College.
Known as a fierce defender of civil discourse related to race relations with specific reference to encouraging open dialogue and tolerance between African American and white communities, Channing Brown will speak about her experiences and perspectives on the topic.
“Our commitment to racial justice and reconciliation requires we dig into the muddiness of humanity, reckoning with the worst of our humanity as we call out its best,” she said. “This work is not for the faint of heart. It requires hope. Not a hope founded on good feelings or good intentions, but hope that demands. For our hope is risky, relentless, rooted in our certainty that love will win.”
This event is part of the Community Artist and Speaker Series, and is free and open to the public. First Presbyterian Church is located at 508 Franklin Ave., Grand Haven.