The Kinky Curly Theological Collective

KinkyCurlyTheo.jpgIn the fall of 2017, I gathered a group of African and African American women to launch a ministry that I have been pregnant with for years “The Kinky Curly Theological Collective.”  This collective affirms the experiences, wisdom, and expertise of black women, validating these experiences as a legitimate locus of theological pedagogy. We do this by taking a community centered approach in which practitioners heal, learn, teach, and grow together in our own teaching and practice. In doing so, we will nurture and build a new cadre of spiritual leaders whose understanding of God and God’s world is validated in our identity as African and African American women. 

We exist to transform theology and the societal structures bad theology have propped up. These structures – be it the Church, education, or the halls of government, have intentionally excluded our voices, and if they are included, our intelligence, passion, faith experience, and culture is often silenced just so we can fit in. But do we have to fit in? Do we have to belong to a place that does not intend good for our bodies and those of our families and kin? Or can we dare to imagine the creation of something bigger, something larger that does not exist as a result of our pain but exists as a result of our gifts and talents that give it life?

Through the Kinky Curly Theological Collective, we are doing this level of imagining and creation right now. We are supporting and nurturing a cadre of African and African American women who will not only show up in systems differently but who are creating new systems through curriculum creation and teaching, writing and publishing, and establishing connections back on the continent of Africa. This is important because it will deepen our understanding of the cultural assets and resources that we already possess to be well.

In addition, we will focus on healing and congruence within our faith traditions. In this preferred future, the Church no longer is a space that causes pain for our people but is a source of deep joy because it has not only reconciled with its past but is led by African and African American women who are changing the narrative. This change will also improve our sociological outcomes for our people. While some may not always see the connection here, the reality is that bad theology leads to a bad sociology which we see taking place at multiple levels of government as leaders twist our sacred texts for their own selfish gains.

We are a collective because we will resist the societal pressure to compete and isolate from one another. Together, we will heal and grow, together will we create a new framework based in our shared and unique narratives and gifts, together we will bend the arc of the moral universe a bit more towards justice, inviting the Spirit of God to dwell among us as we dwell with each other. 

If you are a black woman who wants to be a part of this work, join us. Join us on facebook, sign up for our mailing list, and if you happen to live in Minnesota, come out to our event tomorrow night at Heritage Tea House on University in St. Paul.

And if you are not a black woman, help us spread the word. This work is too expansive to do alone. 

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