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Betsey Stockton Center for Black Church Studies · Center for the Study of Christianity and the Black Experience

Through Our Own Lens: Examining Christianity and the Black American Experience

Hybrid Film Screening and Panel Discussion

April 6, 2024 • 1:00–5:00PM ET • Hybrid Event

Princeton Theological Seminary, Theodore Wright Library, Theron Room

Registration is Closed

Through Our Own Lens: Examining Christianity and the Black American Experience

Hybrid Film Screening and Panel Discussion

1:00PM: Film screening
3:30–5:00PM: Panel discussion

A Panel Discussion on the Documentary “Unspoken”. This panel discussion invites you to delve into the complex and often fraught relationship between Christianity and the African American religious experience, as explored in the documentary Unspoken.

Join us as we:

  • Critically assess the perception among some African Americans that Christianity is a “white” religion.
  • Explain the significance for all Christians of the historic role played by African church fathers in shaping and spreading the faith.
  • Explore the rich history and diverse expressions of African American Christian faith, from its roots in resistance to its vibrant contemporary forms.
  • Examine the ongoing challenges and triumphs of African American Christians navigating predominantly white religious spaces.
  • Amplify the voices and perspectives of Black theologians, scholars, and community leaders.
  • Engage in a critical and constructive dialogue about how to move forward toward a more just and equitable faith landscape.

Location: Princeton Theological Seminary, Theodore Sedgwick Wright Library, Theron Room

Featured Speakers

Ohene (President) of the Meachum School of Haymanot, Assistant Professor of Church History and Black Church Studies

Vince Bantu

Fuller Theological Seminary

Vince Bantu is the Ohene (President) of the Meachum School of Haymanot and is Assistant Professor of Church History and Black Church Studies at Fuller Theological Seminary. Vince’s assignment from the Lord is to proclaim that the Bisrat (Gospel) of Yeshua is for all nations, tribes and tongues and to do this by teaching on the earliest history of Christianity in Africa and Asia. Vince is the author of Those for Whom the Lamp Shines: The Making of Egyptian Ethnic Identity in Late Antiquity (UC Press), A Multitude of All Peoples (IVP), Gospel Haymanot (UMI) and The Bisrat (Jude 3 Project). Vince is also the Ohene (President) of the Society of Gospel Haymanot (SGH), an academic society of theological Gospelism—Afro-rooted theology committed to the universal Lordship of Jesus, biblical authority and the liberation of the oppressed. Vince also serves as the Katabi (Editor) of the publication of SGH—the Haymanot Journal. Vince, his wife Diana, and their daughters live and minister at Beloved Community Church in St. Louis and they love to travel, watch movies and bust some spades.

Associate Professor of New Testament

Lisa Marie Bowens

Princeton Theological Seminary

Dr. Lisa Marie Bowens, an Associate Professor of New Testament at Princeton Theological Seminary, earned a BS (cum laude), MSBE, and MLIS from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and an MTS and ThM from Duke Divinity School. She received her PhD from Princeton Theological Seminary and is the first African American woman to earn tenure in Princeton Theological Seminary’s Bible department where she teaches a variety of courses. An award-winning author, she was designated by Patheos as one of the 50 New Testament Scholars to read and follow and recently delivered the prestigious Speaker Lectures at Oxford University in 2023. She has written a number of articles and two books, An Apostle in Battle: Paul and Spiritual Warfare in 2 Corinthians 12:1-10 and African American Readings of Paul: Reception, Resistance, and Transformation. Her monograph, African American Readings of Paul, has won several awards, and is the first book to trace historically African American interpretations of the Apostle Paul and his letters from the 1700s to the Civil Rights Movement. Among her current writing projects are two commentaries, one on 2 Corinthians and one on 1-2 Thessalonians. She is a member of a number of professional societies, including the Society of Biblical Literature, the Society of Pentecostal Studies, and the Society for the Study of Black Religion.

Television Co-Host

Christopher Broussard

“First Things First’’ and “The Herd with Colin Cowherd"

Chris is an internationally-known sports analyst, commentator and broadcaster for the FS1 television network and FOX Sports Radio. He is a co-host for the daily television show “First Things First’’ and can also be seen regularly on “The Herd with Colin Cowherd.’’ Chris also co-hosts the nationally syndicated FOX Sports Radio show “The Odd Couple’’ on weeknights.

Before joining FOX Sports in the Fall of 2016, Chris worked for 12 years as an NBA analyst and reporter at ESPN, ESPN The Magazine, and In that role, he shared the screen with some of the NBA’s legendary figures, including Magic Johnson, with whom he co-starred on the “KIA NBA Countdown Show.” Chris’ achievements led to his being named one of the 100 Black History Makers of 2012 by, the African-American news arm of NBC. He wrote for The New York Times from 1998-2004, The Akron Beacon-Journal from 1994-1998, and The Cleveland Plain Dealer from 1990-1994. Chris graduated from Oberlin College with a Bachelor’s Degree in English in 1990.

Chris has been a spokesperson for former NBA star Allan Houston’s “Father Knows Best” program and a National Chair for the “Ties Never Broken’’ campaign sponsored by Fathers Incorporated. A Board member for Athletes in Action, Chris is a frequent speaker at colleges, high schools, charitable fundraisers, youth-related events, and churches, having addressed congregations as varied as Baptist, Methodist, Pentecostal, Charismatic, Catholic and Congregational. He has taught seminars on the Biblical heritage of African people and was featured prominently in the groundbreaking documentary “Unspoken,” which reveals ancient Africa’s substantial Christian history. Chris also co-authored and co-hosted “Share The Dream,” a book and video project that promotes racial unity and reconciliation through the teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Chris has twin daughters and lives with his wife of nearly 30 years in New Jersey.

Lecturer in Sociology, Executive Director and Senior Fellow for Social Science and Policy

Jacqueline C. Rivers

Harvard University, Seymour Institute for Black Church and Policy Studies

Jacqueline C. Rivers is a lecturer in Sociology at Harvard University and the Executive Director and Senior Fellow for Social Science and Policy of the Seymour Institute for Black Church and Policy Studies. She was a Senior Fellow at The King’s College in New York City and a Hutchins Fellow in the W. E. B. Du Bois Research Institute at Harvard University. She has presented at Princeton University, the University of Notre Dame, the University of Pennsylvania, the Vatican, Stanford University, the United Nations and in several other venues. Her publications include “The Paradox of the Black Church and Religious Freedom” in the University of St. Thomas Law Journal; a chapter in the volume Not Just Good but Beautiful; another in Race and Covenant: Recovering the Religious Roots for American Reconciliation and a chapter co-authored with Orlando Patterson in The Cultural Matrix  published by Harvard University Press. Dr. Rivers works with leaders in the ecumenical black church to promote a philosophical, political, and theological framework for a pro-poor, pro-life, pro-family movement and has worked on issues of social justice and Christian activism in the black community for more than thirty years. She serves on the Board of Advisors for the Religious Freedom Institute, the Board of Directors for Becket Law, the Board of Directors for the Center for Early African Christianity and on the Religious Liberty Initiative Board of Advisors at University of Notre Dame.



Rev. Dr. David G. Latimore

Betsey Stockton Center for Black Church Studies

Rev. Dr. David G. Latimore serves as the Director for the Betsey Stockton Center for Black Church Studies at Princeton Theological Seminary. ​​​

The Betsey Stockton Center brings the exceptional strengths and resources of the seminary to support the prophetic and social justice traditions of the black church. The Center also serves to advance, and be transformed by, theological education that develops and nurtures current and future leaders of black religious institutions and to be a national leader in creating knowledge that addresses, in new and innovative ways, the theological and praxiological issues confronting the communities and constituencies served by the black church.

Rev. Dr. Latimore has over twenty years of pastoral experience. He most recently served as the sixth Senior Pastor of the Fifteenth Avenue Baptist Church in Nashville, Tennessee. He has also served as Senior Pastor at the Mt. Zion Baptist Church (Joliet, IL), the Mt. Carmel Baptist Church (Gainesville, FL), the Southern Union Baptist Church (St. Louis, MO), and has also served the First Calvary Baptist Church (Durham, NC) as Senior Associate Minister. Rev. Dr. Latimore was licensed into ministry by Bishop Paul S. Morton at Greater St. Stephen Full Gospel Baptist Church (New Orleans, LA).

Rev. Dr. Latimore graduated from Harvard University with an A.B. in Economics and received his Master’s of Divinity degree from Duke Divinity. He received his Doctorate of Ministry in Homiletics from McCormick Theological Seminary. His doctoral thesis, Liberating Lazarus: The Homiletical Mediation of Liberation for Congregant and Community, was awarded the John Randall Hunt Prize for Outstanding D.Min. Thesis and Academic Record. Additionally, Rev. Dr. Latimore received his Ph.D. in Theology from the University of Chicago Divinity School. His dissertation focused on the influence of the endogenous theology of neoliberalism on the ecclesiology and praxiology of African-American religious institutions.

Before seminary, Rev. Dr. Latimore enjoyed a successful career in investment management and economic development. Most recently, he served as President and CEO of the Initiative for A Competitive Inner City (ICIC), an economic research firm focused on economic development in America’s inner cities. He has served in several executive management positions in investment management firms across the nation and began his career in management consulting with Bain and Company. Rev. Dr. Latimore has faithfully served his community, providing leadership to several organizations, including as a founding member of the African-American Clergy Coalition, former Chaplain of the River Valley Juvenile Detention Center, and Chair of a local chapter of the Black Chamber of Commerce. He has also served as an Adjunct Instructor at McCormick Theological Seminary, University of Toronto, Moody Bible Institute, Dominican University, University of Chicago, and a Faculty Fellow at Belmont University.

Rev. Dr. Latimore is blessed to be the husband of Min. Tammie Brown Latimore for over twenty-nine years and the father of Grace, Sydney, David, II, Lauren, and Nina.


Dr. David L. Tubbs

CSCBE, The King's College

For information on the Center for the Study of Christianity and the Black Experience, go to

Director David L. Tubbs is an Associate Professor of Politics at The King’s College, where he has taught since 2005. He earned his Ph.D. in Politics at Princeton University.

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Betsey Stockton Center for Black Church Studies

The Betsey Stockton Center for Black Church Studies exists to highlight the theological and religious witness, which arises out of the African American and African Diaspora Christian experience. The Center helps to prepare men and women for vocational ministry or scholarly pursuits shaped by a wider knowledge and deeper appreciation of Black life within American and global Christianity.

The Betsey Stockton Center aspires to be a national leader in research on the Black church through the collaborative creation of scholarship with leading scholars, community leaders, and pastors to address the critical issues confronting clergy, congregants, and communities served by the Black church.