Willie Parker, M.D. to Speak at Berea College Convocation

Willie Parker, M.D.

Willie James Parker, M.D., a 1986 graduate of Berea College will speak this week on Thursday, November 10, at 3:00pm in Phelps Stokes Chapel on the Berea College campus. His address, titled Reproductive Justice in Christian Understanding: New Wine in Old Wine Skins, will focus on his Christian identity as a physician who performs abortions and who advocates for reproductive rights.

Dr. Parker is an obstetrician and gynecologist. He states that his decision to provide abortion services is one that did not come without hesitation. Dr. Parker did not originally provide the service because he believed that it were morally wrong. A sermon by Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. challenged him to a deeper spiritual understanding prompting him to believe that if he were to show compassion, he would have to act on behalf of those women. In 2009, he began providing the services to women full time.

The convocation events, which are provided to both the campus and public communities, are a significant part of a student’s educational experience at Berea College. See https://www.berea.edu/convocations/ for the schedule of all convocations this academic year. All convocations are free and open to the public.

In addition to the convocation, Dr. Parker will speak earlier on Thursday at the Peanut Butter & Gender luncheon at noon. That event is held in Draper 106.

Categories: News, People, Programs and Initiatives
Tags: Convocation, Event, Medical, Willie Parker

Berea College, the first interracial and coeducational college in the South, focuses on learning, labor and service. The College admits only academically promising students with limited financial resources, primarily from Kentucky and Appalachia, although students come from 40 states and 70 countries. Every Berea student receives a Tuition Promise Scholarship, which means no Berea student pays for tuition. Berea is one of nine federally-recognized Work Colleges, so students work 10 hours or more weekly, earning money for books, housing and meals. The College’s motto, “God has made of one blood all peoples of the earth,” speaks to its inclusive Christian character.