The McClendon Scholar Program brings scholars and thought leaders to Washington to share their learning, wisdom and insight about how the church can be more effective in its work for social justice. Established through the generosity of the late Rev. Dr. Jack E. McClendon, the program grows out of Dr. McClendon’s insight that justice, service and action can only be sustained when a community works to deepen its faith and grapples with the profound issues of the day.
Due to the pandemic, all McClendon Scholar Programs are online.
- Saturday, March 20, A Lenten Presention with Dr. Judy Fentress-Williams, professor of Old Testament, Virginia Theological Seminary.
- Wednesday, April 14, 7 pm, “Spiritual Audacity: The Abraham Joshua Heschel Story,” film and discussion.
- Rev. James Lawson, A New Years Message for America, Feb. 10, 2021.
- Lessons from the Civil Rights Movement (a conversation with Rev. Heather Shortlidge, Rev. Joe Daniels, historian Taylor Branch, and civil rights leader Bernard Lafayette.)
- E.J. Dionne, Washington Post columnist and author, One Nation After Trump: How People of Faith Can Help Save Our Country, Dec. 7, 2020
- James Forman, Jr., professor, Yale Law School and author of Locking Up Our Own. After the Protests: What Do We Do Now?
- Karenna Gore, A Spiritual and Moral Response to the Climate Crisis, Sept. 19, 2020.
- Dr. Judy Fentress-Williams, Storytelling for Survival: The Hebrew Bible and Formative Stories. July 25-26, 2020.
- Revolution of the Heart: The Dorothy Day Story, Feb. 25, 2020, with Sister Simone Campbell and filmmaker Martin Doblmeier. Simone Campbell interview.
Highlights of Earlier Programs
Since its founding in 2006, we have hosted some of the most preeminent scholars, theologians and authors in the country, including: Walter Brueggmann, James Cone, E.J. Dionne, Taylor Branch, Ellen Davis, Bryan Stevenson, Ron White, Kelly Brown Douglas, Sr. Simone Campbell, Sen. Chris Coons, Raphael Warnock, and Peter Wehner. Below are excerpts from presentations by two of our well-known speakers, which provide a good example of the kind of excellent programs we have had through the years:
E.J. Dionne, Author and Columnist, Nov. 14, 2016
- Hope for America (Time: 3.17)
- Our Divided Country (Time: .52)
- Empathy Can Bring Us Together (Time: 2.25 min)
You can see E.J. Dionne’s full presentation here.
Raphael Warnock, Pastor, Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, June 9, 2018
- Unfinished Business (Time: 6.43)
- MLK’s Revolution of Values (Time 3.46)
- Churches and Restorative Justice (Time 7:23)
You can see Raphael Warnock’s entire presentation here.
A complete archive of recordings of McClendon Scholar programs can be found here.