Finding saints in San Francisco

After driving across the country to deliver poetry in the 1930s, Langston Hughes had experienced every indignity a black motorist could imagine.  But on a referral from Arkansas, he received a letter in Los Angeles from arts patron Noel Sullivan inviting Hughes to come to San Francisco to stay in his mansion and write to his heart’s content.

Likewise, Dr. Howard Thurman wrote about segregation in American churches, but it was an invitation from San Francisco to actually create an intentionally integrated church that caused him to leave his faculty post at Howard University School of Religion.

Using 2 Cor 4:15 as my text, I used both men’s experiences as examples of how the Divine works through people to transform realities such as racial discrimination.  It was part of a four-week series on race at Calvary Presbyterian Church in the Pacific Heights neighborhood, just blocks away from where Hugnes and Thurman encountered their saints.

The clear implication is that anyone can be and should consider themselves the face of God for all they encounter.


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