Home Dr. James Forbes to speak at VICPP’s “Day for All People”

Dr. James Forbes to speak at VICPP’s “Day for All People”



dr. james forbesThe Rev. Dr. James Forbes, one of the top preachers in America, will be the keynote speaker at the Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy’s “Day for All People” on Wednesday, Jan. 20. The day-long advocacy event will offer participants the opportunity to talk with their delegates and senators about important issues at the start of the General Assembly’s 2016 session.

The event will begin at the Claude G. Perkins Living and Learning Center on the campus of Virginia Union University and then move to the General Assembly on Capitol Square. After visiting with their legislators, participants will move back to Virginia Union University to hear Dr. Forbes speak, followed by a panel discussion.

“The theme of the day will be ‘Racism Beyond the Confederate Flag,’” said the Rev. Charles Swadley, interim executive Director of the Virginia Interfaith Center. “We’ll be talking about what racism means to various groups today and how policies are viewed through the lens of racism.”

During the Civil Rights movement in the early 1960s, Forbes participated in the sit-ins at the Woolworth’s lunch counter at in Raleigh, N.C. He has said that one his callings was to “build a world in which our racial differences would not tear us apart.”Forbes has categorized racism not just as a sociological phenomenon but as a religious faith in which people are committed to the idea that differences among humans are more distinguishing than their similarities.”

Dr. Forbes is Senior Minister Emeritus of the Riverside Church in New York City, where he served as Senior Minister for 18 years. Most recently, Forbes has been founder and president of the Healing of the Nations Foundation, an interfaith national and global ministry for spiritual renewal and holistic health.

He is internationally known as a speaker, preacher and teacher and was named one of the 12 “most effective preachers” in the English-speaking world by Newsweek magazine, and one of the greatest black preachers by Ebony magazine. Prior to his tenure at Riverside Church, Forbes was the Harry Emerson Fosdick Professor of Preaching at Union Theological Seminary in New York.

Dr. Forbes already has many Richmond connections. He was pastor at St. John’s United Holy Church of America from 1965-1973. He also worked as campus minister for Virginia Union University from 1968-1970, and earned his Clinical Pastoral Education Certificate from the Medical College of Virginia in 1968. Forbes also has among his dozen or so honorary doctorates a Doctor of Divinity from the University of Richmond.

The North Carolina native is ordained in both the American Baptist Church and the Original United Holy Church of America. Forbes has written several books and had two songs published.

The Day for All People will begin at 8 a.m. on Jan. 20 with breakfast and registration at Virginia Union University, located at 1500 N. Lombardy Street in Richmond. (The Gardner Street entrance is also available.) The morning session will include presentations on several important issues including health care, immigration, economic justice and criminal justice reform.

There will be two hours for visiting with legislators, followed by lunch back at VUU. The event should conclude by 3 p.m.

Tickets for the day-long advocacy event are $30, $15 for students, which includes breakfast and lunch and transportation from the VUU campus to the General Assembly and back. There is a 10% discount if you register by Friday, Jan. 8. To register go to: actionnetwork.org/forms/vicpp-2016-day-for-all-people-registration-form.

For more than 30 year the Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy has been a way for persons of all faiths to be advocates through the legislative process on issues that are important to them. Call 804-643-2474 or visit www.virginiainterfaithcenter.org for more information.



Have a guest column, letter to the editor, story idea or a news tip? Email editor Chris Graham at [email protected]. Subscribe to AFP podcasts on Apple PodcastsSpotifyPandora and YouTube.