Rising partisanship in our country has made finding common ground difficult. A recent study found that Methodism is one of America’s most politically divided denominations, with both congregants and their pastors roughly split between the Democratic and Republican Parties. This makes the work of a pastor – a spiritual leader to everyone in their pews – hard. Navigating those tensions and modeling new ways of remaining in relationship with those we disagree is not for the weak of heart. Pastoring in Partisan Times seeks to gain insight into pastoring purple in red and blue churches.
In Episode 2 we’re in conversation with Dr. Leah Gunning Francis, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Faculty at Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis, Indiana. Dr. Gunning Francis is the author of Ferguson and Faith: Sparking Leadership and Awakening Community. She lived in St. Louis and served on the Eden Seminary faculty during the Ferguson uprising. For the book, she interviewed more than two dozen clergy and young activists who engaged in the quest for racial justice following the shooting death of Michael Brown, Jr. in Ferguson, Missouri. Dr. Gunning Francis offers wisdom and practical advice for finding your voice and speaking up and out.