(PNS) In the second of three events commemorating the centennial of the Tulsa race massacre, Imagine Tulsa 21 and the Synod of the Sun’s Network for Dismantling Racism (N4dR) participants were called to “reflect and respond” to the initial conversation with Hannibal B. Johnson, an attorney, author and consultant specializing in diversity and inclusion as well as chair of the Education Committee for the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre Centennial Commission.
Johnson has written four books related to the 1921 race massacre, including “Black Wall Street: From Riot to Renaissance in Tulsa’s Historic Greenwood District” and “Black Wall Street 100: An American City Grapples With Its Historical Racial Trauma,” and is an eminent historian on matters related to the massacre.
The co-moderators of the 224th General Assembly (2020) of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), the Rev. Gregory J. Bentley and Ruling Elder Elona Street-Stewart, expressed their appreciation to the group for acknowledging the event that has been kept as one of the nation’s darkest secrets and talked about why it was important they attend the event.
Bentley said healing requires six actions:
Street-Stewart recognized the importance and similarities of the history of Indigenous people and African Americans as it relates to treatment by and relationship with white Americans.
Following remarks from the co-moderators, individual participants shared conversations on their reactions to the conversation with Johnson in assigned breakout rooms.
One group was facilitated by Gordon Edwards, General Presbyter of Cimarron Presbytery, which is in northern and northwestern Oklahoma.
Edwards began the conversation by asking group members, “Did you learn anything new or from anything older that you heard in a new way or a different way?”