For the last two years my partner, Sadé Perkins, and I have been running a community based research project on Religion in Houston’s Pan-African Community. Funded by the Crossroads Project, based at Princeton University, we have conducted public oral histories of twelve elders about the relationship between Black radical politics and religion based in the city’s Third, Fourth, and Fifth Wards–the historic heart of its African American community. We have also produced a short “proof of concept” documentary, with the hopes of eventually putting together a longer film and a book.
Last night, we held our final session. We spoke with the seminal Black Humanist Dr. Mtangulizi Sanyika for over ninety minutes about everything from his time at Harvard as a founding member of the university’s African and African American Studies Department to his foundational role in the Black Unitarian Universalist movement to his thoughts on building multi-racial congregations.