“Take Me to the Water” offers a critical look at baptism, the rite of passage meant to signify new birth, and the segregation of the North American church that began “down by the riverside.” Proclaiming the raceless gospel for an undivided “kin-dom” that is coming, this living epistle calls on its readers to submerge all hierarchical ways of being and belonging.
“‘Take Me to the Water’ is a few sheets from my ‘working paper’ as I aim to strain Jesus’ gospel of racialization and call the North American church to repentance for sins committed in support of a racialized worldview and the segregation of human beings,” Thomas writes in the introduction. “I am calling the church to live into its baptismal identity through the proclamation of the raceless gospel, because we’re all God’s children preparing for a coming ‘kin-dom.’ Anything less is a watered-down gospel not worth repeating or listening to on a Sunday morning.”
“‘Take Me to The Water’ invites readers to reimagine how our new birth in God’s family requires us to see through the lenses of Christ and embrace each other as members of the one family,” Emmett L. Dunn, Executive Secretary-Treasurer/CEO of the Lott Carey Baptist Foreign Mission Convention, said.
Dunn added, “Drawing from the experiences of the once-enslaved, Starlette Thomas walks us through the pages of the slave narrative, painting a picture of a segregated church with its roots etched in the sociopolitical construct of race. Using water baptism as a catalyst for a unifying church, this book helps us ‘to deconstruct race and decolonize identity.’ ‘Take Me to the Water’ should be required reading for anyone serious about breaking down the walls of segregation and giving birth to a unified church.”
A graduate of Buffalo State College (B.A. in English), Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School (M.Div.), and Wesley Theological Seminary (D.Min. in Spirituality for Transforming Community), Thomas has served as a denominational leader, pastor, and clergy coach.
For more information and to preview “Take Me to the Water”: The Raceless Gospel as Baptismal Pedagogy for a Desegregated Church,
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