A Response to Social Injustice and the Death of George Floyd
Jun 3, 2020
“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Stark College and Seminary is a diverse community of Christ followers seeking to theologically educate individuals to serve the church and community. SCS, since its inception, has made great efforts to meet the challenge of becoming diverse in serving the needs of the church. We have not been perfect, but have trusted God through those challenges to become more Christlike in our service to theological education as well as those who enter the doors of our institution. Through the years, we have grown and learned from the mistakes and errors that we admit have not fully served those who come to be educated in our institution. While the context of the church and students continue to change, we here at SCS understand the necessity to shift to meet those changes to enhance those we serve. Our mission has been and will continue to be to educate the under-served community of Christ followers and community to be and become more Christlike in service. Our faculty, staff, and administration are diverse as we seek to model the diversity of our student population and the ever-changing context in which we serve in South Texas and beyond. We will continue to provide quality, fair, and equal theological education and activities to support our mission and students.
The great Baptist ethicist Dr. T.B. Maston in his essay Riots and Rights on “Problems of the Christian Life” series Baptist Standard in June 5, 1968 said, “The riots properly can and should be condemned, but we should not close our eyes to the conditions that tend to spawn the riots. Neither should we let our condemnation cause us to lose our interest and concern for the constitutional rights of all citizens, regardless of race or class.” We at SCS understand the need to make a statement that allows us to abandon our fear of each other and to fear only God by being honest without deception, as Dr. Howard Thurman challenges all in Jesus and the Disinherited. We will not be silent or passive allowing those in our diverse community to stand alone while systemic practices, attitudes, and actions of racial prejudices and discrimination of social injustice spawn hatred toward those of any race, especially our African American brothers and sisters. We choose not the path of destruction or hate, but love. We choose to love and serve our students, faculty, and staff so that we may become more of Dr. Martin Luther King’s “Beloved Community,” for this is truly the nature and expression of becoming the Kingdom of God.
The death of George Floyd causes us to remember all who have died due to injustice and hatred. We understand there are those who choose to advance hatred, but SCS will follow the model and example of Christ as we follow Him and His word the Holy Bible. It is the distinctive of who we are as a Baptist Institution, but most of all, as followers of Jesus Christ. As we serve and live out our institutional values and principles, we will not remain silent, but seek ways to lift our voice to advance the Kingdom of God for our diverse student population, now and to come.
Tony Celelli, Ph.D.
Tina Villarreal-Cooper, MSIDET
VP, Student Experience
Jena Dunn, Ed.D.
Andres Garcia, MDiv.
Acting Director, Certificate Program
Tony Miranda, D.Min.
Acting Director, Graduate Program
Celeste Gonzalez-Moreno, Ph.D.
Acting Director, Bachelor and Diploma Programs
Khristian Nichols, MDiv.
Director of Theological Library Services
Primitivo Pagayon, MDiv.
Grover Pinson, MDiv.
Christopher B. Stapper, Ph.D.
VP, Mission and Finance
Eric Tarver, MAM
Director, Church Relations
Fritz Williams, D.Min.