Protests and uprisings are one way that people of faith respond to acts of injustice. Gandhi, Martin Luther King and Desmond Tutu exemplify religious leadership that was nonviolent. In Los Angeles, Rev. Cecil (Chip) Murray played a similar role during the 1992 civil unrest, channeling outrage at the actions of the police and courts into constructive engagement with the community. CRCC grew out of a scholarly attempt to understand the faith-based response to the L.A. riots.
Since then, Los Angeles has witnessed large-scale demonstrations related to immigrant rights, protests against war that involved civil disobedience by clergy and faith leaders, and collaboration between people of faith and labor unions supporting income equality. Through song, symbols and ritual actions, many political protests draw on the resources of religion to mobilize people.
- CommentaryWhen a Pastor Shows Up at a Black Lives Matter ProtestI posted a question on Facebook at the beginning of 2018: “What ever happened to Black Lives Matter?” The question wasn’t prompted by animosity, despite the disagreements between clergy and BLM. To …Topics: Black Church, CMCCE, Criminal Justice, Protests and Uprisings, Race and Culture, Religious Leadership, Violence
- VideoThe Black Church and Black Lives Matter – Faith Leaders Institute
- CRCC in the NewsFaith Community Responds to Racism and Violence in CharlottesvilleAfter white supremacists’ protests in Charlottesville left one dead, many injured and the country grappling with its still prevalent racism, faith leaders have been working to respond with words and action. Rev. Mark …Topics: Black Church, Christians and Christianity, CMCCE, Community Organizing, Disaster Response, National and Cultural Identity, Political Attitudes and Values, Protests and Uprisings, Race and Culture, Religious Leadership, Violence
- CRCC in the NewsMedia Coverage of L.A. Civil Unrest AnniversaryHaving grown out of the 1992 Los Angeles civil Unrest, the USC Center for Religion and Civic Culture and Cecil Murray Center for Community Engagement commemorated the 25th anniversary with multiple opportunities …Topics: Black Church, CMCCE, Disaster Response, Faith-Based Organizations, Government and Religion, Protests and Uprisings, Race and Culture, Religious Leadership, Violence
- CommentaryA Declaration of InterdependenceA nation of nations, our actions in these troubled times must be guided by a notion of notions—let us call it “A Declaration of Interdependence.” We were founded to be a beacon …Topics: CMCCE, Protests and Uprisings, Religious Leadership, Southern California, Violence
- VideoMay 3, 1992: Rev. Cecil Murray Preaches as the Fires of the L.A. Riots Burn
- VideoDignity and Power Now: The Spirituality of Black Lives Matter
- VideoCharting the Future of Religion in Los Angeles and Beyond – The Story of USC CRCC
- CommentaryL.A. Times: It’s 2016 and the Civil Rights Era Hasn’t EndedThis post originally appeared on the Sunday OpEd page of the L.A. Times. I participated in the civil rights movement in the 1960s. I was pastor of my second church, in Kansas City, Kansas, in …Topics: Black Church, CMCCE, Criminal Justice, Economic Inequality, Political Attitudes and Values, Protests and Uprisings, Race and Culture, Religious Leadership, Southern California
- CRCC in the NewsOC Register: Police and Community Will March Together in AugustUPDATE: OC Register columnist David Whiting wrote about the OC Solidarity March led by Pastor Mark Whitlock and Murray Center alum Charles Dorsey. Over the years, I’ve witnessed dozens of marches – some for peace, …Topics: CMCCE, Protests and Uprisings, Religious Leadership, Violence
- CommentaryWhat’s a Preacher to Say in the Wake of Tragedy?If you were anywhere near a radio, TV to catch the news this past week, you know that July 5-8 was a difficult and emotionally charged week. We saw footage of not …Topics: Black Church, Christians and Christianity, CMCCE, Creativity and Innovation, Protests and Uprisings, Race and Culture, Religious Leadership, Violence
- CRCC in the NewsA Religion Dispatches Roundtable Discussion on Religious “Nones”Religion Dispatches’ Peter Laarman led a roundtable conversation on religious “nones” with Kaya Oakes, The Nones Are Alright: A New Generation of Seekers, Believers and Those in Between, Sikivu Hutchinson, atheist scholar and author, …Topics: Black Church, Christians and Christianity, Creativity and Innovation, Evangelicals and Evangelicalism, Millennials, Protests and Uprisings, Religious "Nones", Religious Beliefs and Rituals
“An unjust law is itself a species of violence. Arrest for its breach is more so. Now the law of nonviolence says that violence should be resisted not by counter-violence but by nonviolence. This I do by breaking the law and by peacefully submitting to arrest and imprisonment.”
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- Samuel ChuContributing FellowSamuel Chu is a seasoned community organizer and strategist who works at the intersection of faith and public policy.
- Donald E. MillerDirector of Strategic InitiativesDonald Miller focuses on global religious trends, genocides of the 20th century, and the role of religious NGOs in addressing issues of moral concern.
- Cecil L. MurrayUniversity FellowRev. Cecil Murray works to ensure that the legacy of African American Church leaders pass on their years of experience to the next generation.