Letter From Charlottesville: Legacy of Civil Rights Pioneer Victoria Gray Adams

Posted on December 29, 2015 by PLT Staff

Paper given by Ashley Diaz Mejias as part of the Spring Institute on Lived Theology 2008 in Charlottesville, Virginia. She reflects on the conflict she encountered as a graduate student yearning to return to the fast pace of neighborhood development work. With the help of Victoria Gray Adams, however, Mejias finally understands the academic world’s service to real social change.

Excerpt: “As the new generation of seed people, our reaping must continue, and was continuing, as we asked probing questions of our academic, spiritual and civic communities, as we recorded her story and the stories of others who similarly transformed the journey of our nation, and as we worked to refuse the complacency that our privilege could offer. I finally began to understand. Mrs. Adams warned me that the civil rights movement did not reach conclusion with the seating of an integrated delegation in 1968, nor will it reach conclusion, as long as the pockmarks of oppression, estrangement and suffering are borne on the soul of society. The movement continues, and the anatomy of participation comprises, and requires, all communities, all disciplines.”

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