The Willis D. Weatherford, Jr. Campus Christian Center

Robbins Peace Emphasis

The Campus Christian Center represents the most visible and tangible expression of the College’s contemporary understanding of its Christian identity, as well as the most prominent means by which the College fulfills the third feature of its mission: “To stimulate understanding of the Christian faith and its many expressions and to emphasize the Christian ethic and the motive of service to others.”

In working to fulfill its responsibility to this major feature of the institutional mission, the Campus Christian Center also orients its departmental work and programs around another intentional feature of the mission: “Adherence to the College’s scriptural foundation, ‘God has made of one blood all peoples of the earth,’ shapes the College’s culture and programs so that students and staff alike can work toward both personal goals and a vision of a world shaped by Christian values, such as the power of love over hate, human dignity and equality and peace with justice.”  In other words, the College has commissioned the Campus Christian Center to create programs that will encourage and empower students, staff, and faculty to work toward precisely the kind of world that the mission-statement envisions.  Deriving its primary character from the College’s Christian identity, therefore, the work of the Campus Christian Center also emphasizes personal dimensions, social dimensions, and the practical significance of reconciliation and peacemaking.  Thus, the Campus Christian Center develops and administers programs that promote the vision of a world shaped by values that Christians share with many other religious traditions: the power of love over hate, human dignity and equality, and peace with justice.

The Earl G. and Sue D. Robbins Peace Lecture

The Campus Christian Center has developed and administers the Robbins Peace Emphasis as one of the programs through which the department fulfills its commission from the College and promotes those essential values for authentic community.  Through the Robbins Peace Emphasis each year, the Campus Christian Center offers “The Earl G. and Sue D. Robbins Peace Lecture,” which occurs in the Convocation Series, currently during the spring semester each year.

 Mr. Earl G. Robbins, a former student of Berea College, established this lectureship on peace in 1988.  Mr. Robbins provided funding for this program, as he stated at the time, because, at Berea College, he had learned “what is important in life,” the true humanity “of all of us.”  He and his family instituted this lectureship in order to help students to discover precisely this.  Mr. Robbins also intentionally instituted this program with a connection to the Campus Christian Center, because of his experience as a student at Berea College.  Mr. Robbins said, “[w]hile I was a student at Berea, the Chapel programs were the most stimulating, ideal building facets of the entire educational program.”  For that reason, the Campus Christian Center administers this program.  The Campus Christian Center, the Coordinator of Convocations, and the Office of the President select the speakers for this annual lectureship on peace.

The Earl G. and Sue D. Robbins Peace Lecturers

Year
Speaker
Affiliation

1988-89

Benjamin L. Hooks

Executive Director, NAACP

1989-90

Jennifer Casolo

Salvadoran deportee charged with supplying aid to the rebels (unfounded)

1990-91

William C. Parker

Vice Chancellor for Minority Affairs, University of Kentucky

1991-92

Arun Gandhi

Director of the Gandhi Institute for the Study of Non-Violence

1992-93

Curt Goering

Deputy Director of Amnesty International

1993-94

Julian Bond

Grandson of Berea College Trustee
ca. 1904

1994-95

Sol Urback

Laborer in Oskar Schindler’s factory

1995-96

Art Davidson

Advocate for the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

1996-97

Peter Menzel

Photo-journalist: “Material World: A Global Family Portrait”

1997-98

Dean Foster

Director, Cross-Cultural Services, Berlitz International

1998-99

William Schultz

Executive Director, Amnesty International (Nobel Peace Prize)

1999-2000

Loung Ung and
Ed Miles

“The Changing Face of War” (Campaign for a Landmine Free World)

2000-01

Reuben Richards

Truth and Reconciliation Committee, South Africa

2001-02

Mervyn Love

“Peace-Building Through Reconciliation in Northern Ireland”

2002-03

Brenda Salter-McNeil

Founder and President of Overflow Ministries, Inc.: Devoted to Ministry of Racial and Ethnic Reconciliation

2003-04

Richard Wiener

Holocaust Survivor and Head Elder of the Community of  Mankind Project: Washington, D.C.

2004-05

Lily Fiedy

Deputy Secretary of MIFTAH (Palestinian Initiative for the Promotion of Global Dialogue and Democracy)

2005-06
(Fall Term)

Jayne Seminare Docherty

Associate Professor of Conflict Studies, Conflict Transformation Program, Eastern Mennonite University; Harrisonburg, Virginia

2005-06
(Spring Term)

Ken Sehested

Founding Director, Baptist Peace Fellowship of North America

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