Danté Stewart on understanding the gods of the South

Danté Stewart is the author of “Shoutin’ in the Fire: An American Epistle.” Danté grew up in a Black Pentecostal community in South Carolina, but when he walked on to play football at Clemson University, he suddenly found himself in a very different faith environment. He kept getting drawn into white megachurch communities. The people he met were always nice and welcoming. They made him feel special. They assured him that Jesus didn’t see Black and white, that it was just one big Christian family. 
But after a few years of immersing himself in his new faith, Danté had an awakening. While he was dealing with the emotional pain of seeing young Black men killed by police on TV and across his social media, his new church family were doing their best to ignore it altogether. Talking about his lived reality as a Black man made white congregants uneasy. He may have felt welcomed there, but they were the ones who always belonged. 
And so Danté threw himself into Black liberation theology, reading an entirely different interpretation of scripture. One that connected him to a long line of leaders like Martin Luther King and, his main source of inspiration, James Baldwin. This week on the Reckon Interview, Danté Stewart discusses his experiences moving among faiths, whether Black Southerners and white Southerners worship the same God, advice for people who are struggling with their faith, and a lot more.

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