Wednesday, February 17, 2021

An Archival Sermon Connects Underground Railroad to Christian Hope

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The Living Tradition online resource presents insights into the rich and deep tradition of preaching at Duke Chapel and includes recommendations about archival sermons from Divinity School faculty members. In a new recommendation, Professor Jeffrey Conklin-Miller highlights a sermon titled The Character of Christian Waiting preached at the Chapel in 1976 by Bishop Leontine Kelly.

Professor Conklin-Miller says he selected the sermon both because of a personal encounter he had with Bishop Kelly and because of a compelling story in the sermon about Bishop Kelly’s family discovering a tunnel used as part of the Underground Railroad.

“In this dark and dusty basement tunnel, ‘there is a witness of this Church, a witness underground,” Professor Conklin-Miller writes.

“Kelly says Christian waiting is a faithful patience that acknowledges the sovereignty and activity of God,” he says. “But she also warns us that waiting is not sleeping. Christian waiting is characterized by hope, and as such, remains awake, engaged, and active.”

Read the recommendation by Professor Conklin-Miller and find a link to Bishop Kelly’s sermon.