27th Annual CDF Samuel DeWitt Proctor Institute
for Child Advocacy Ministry
and Dale Andrews Freedom Seminary
July 19-22, 2021
(and July 7 pre-session for seminarians)
Listening to the Children: A Radical Revolution of Values
Movement-building is hard work. We can’t do it alone. One generation alone can’t get it done. We need each other and deep spiritual sustenance to keep going and create the just world our children deserve. The Children’s Defense Fund (CDF)’s Proctor Institute is where we can sing and pray, strategize and struggle, organize and advocate, and share our stories—our hurts and hopes, pain and passion for justice, in Beloved Community. The Proctor Institute refreshes and renews us so that we can continue the hard, hopeful, sacred work of pursuing justice for children and ending child poverty. Plan now to join us.
Usually held on the storied grounds of CDF Haley Farm, the spiritual home of the children’s movement, in 2021 CDF’s Proctor Institute will again be held virtually to ensure it is safe and accessible to all. While the platform will be virtual, the Beloved Community will be real.
Special sessions of the Dale Andrews Freedom Seminary for seminarians and interested others are on July 7, July 19, and July 20th.
CDF’s Proctor Institute for all begins on Tuesday, July 20th from 5:30-8:30 p.m. EDT. On Wednesday and Thursday, July 21 and 22, two workshop sessions are offered between noon-3:30 p.m. EDT and the plenary program is held from 5:30-8:30 p.m. EDT. The plenary program includes theology and child advocacy sessions, “listening to the children” discussions, music and spoken word, and the Great Preacher series. We can’t wait to be together again.
“If you want the opportunity and the chance to meet, hear, and see history in the making, come to this Institute. It opens your mind, heart, and soul to issues you didn’t think were important or relevant and drives you to do more and better.”
“Haley is a place to rest and renew your spirit, challenge your faith, establish friendships with kindred spirits, hear great preaching, and then be ready and willing to go home and speak out and stand up for children!”
“Proctor is a loud voice in the wilderness that reminds me that grace abounds. It will inspire you and renew your hope and reassure your spirit of the fact that the world is in the capable hands of our young people.”
“If you care about the plight of children and the future of this country, you must come and learn to be an advocate for the rights of all God’s children!”
CDF’s 2021 Proctor Institute
“Listening to the Children: A Radical Revolution of Values”
Dale P. Andrews Freedom Seminary Sessions
Wednesday, July 7, 5:30-8:30 p.m. EDT
Gathering and Framework: Seminary, Sanctuary, Streets and Soil
Small Group Discussions: Four tracks will meet separately with faculty:
Undergraduates (Ericka Dunbar, Visiting Professor of Hebrew Bible, Payne Theological Seminary; firstname.lastname@example.org),
Seminarians (Victor Anderson, Oberlin Theological Professor of Ethics and Society, Vanderbilt Divinity School, and Lorena Parrish, Associate Professor of Urban Ministry and Director of the Institute for Community Engagement, Wesley Theological Seminary; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org),
Doctoral Students (Bec Davis, Associate Professor of Christian Education, Union Presbyterian Seminary; RDavis@upsem.edu)
Community Organizers (Ched Myers, Co-Director, Bartimaeus Cooperative Ministry; and Charlene Sinclair, Founder and Director, Center for Race, Religion and Economic Democracy; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org)
Discussion of the Dale P. Andrews Freedom Seminary Book, Let Your Light Shine: Mobilizing for Justice with Children and Youth facilitated by the editors, Virginia Lee, Associate Professor of Christian Education, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, and Reginald Blount, Associate Professor of Formation, Leadership, and Culture, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary
Monday, July 19, Noon-3:30 EDT
Author-facilitated discussions of required texts (see syllabus)
A Theology of Child Advocacy with Will Gipson, Associate Vice Provost, University of Pennsylvania, and Eileen Lindner, author of Thus Far on the Way: A Theology Of Child Advocacy, and consultant for the Presbyterian Foundation and The Presbyterian Mission Agency.
Discussion of “When They See Us” with Ashlee Sellars, Restorative Justice Diversion Program Coordinator, Raphah Institute; Rahim Buford, Manager, Nashville Community Bail Fund and founder, Unheard Voices Outreach; Ericka Dunbar, Visiting Professor of Hebrew Bible, Payne Theological Seminary; and Lorena Parrish, Associate Professor of Urban Ministry and Director of the Institute for Community Engagement, Wesley Theological Seminary
Small Group Discussion with Faculty Facilitators across all four tracks
Monday, July 19, 5:30-8:30 p.m. EDT
Kelly Brown Douglas, Dean, Episcopal Divinity School, discussing her book, Stand Your Ground: Black Bodies and the Justice of God.
“Radical Kinship: The Art of Making Kin” with Slam and Cruz Trujillo, spoken word artists, poets, animators, Homeboy alums
“Backs Against the Wall” Theology with Patrick Reyes, Senior Director of Learning Design Forum for Theological Exploration, and Greg Ellison, Associate Professor of Pastoral Care and Counseling, Candler School of Theology,
Chee Malabar, rapper, writer, hip hop artist, animator: “Feral Child”
Tuesday, July 20, Noon-3:30 p.m. EDT
“Listening to the Sound of the Genuine” with Greg Ellison, Associate Professor of Pastoral Care and Counseling, Candler School of Theology; and Tavares Stephens, poet, spoken word artist, Associate Pastor at St. James UMC
Author-facilitated Discussions on Required Books (see syllabus)
Redefining Christian Education with Mary Love, Adjunct Professor of Christian Education, Hood Theological Seminary and Bec Davis, Associate Professor of Christian Education, Union Presbyterian Seminary, founding chair of Presbyterian Child Advocacy Network
Discussion around the documentary “Black Boys,” including the title song “Black Beauty,” facilitated by Ben Sanders, Assistant Professor of Theology and Ethics, Eden Theological Seminary, and Lorena Parrish, Associate Professor of Urban Ministry and Director for Community Engagement, Wesley Theological Seminary
Small Group Discussions with Faculty Facilitators across all four tracks
CDF’s 2021 Proctor Institute for Child Advocacy Ministry Sessions
Tuesday, July 20, 5:30-8:30 EDT
- Welcome: Marian Wright Edelman, Founder and President Emerita, CDF, and Starsky Wilson, CEO and President, CDF
- “Listening to the Children:” Patrick Reyes, Senior Director of Learning Design, Forum for Theological Exploration, and Asher Reyes, student
- Theology and Child Advocacy Plenary: Michael Tubbs, Special Advisor for Economic Mobility and Opportunity, Office of Governor Gavin Newsom
- Music/Spoken Word: Joe Davis
- Listening to the Children and Building Power for Child-Centered Policy: – Young people in conversation with Maria Caba and Hassanah Smith, CDF-New York
- Great Preacher Series: Bishop Minerva G. Carcano, San Francisco Area, The United Methodist Church
- Postlude: Don Lewis
Wednesday July 21:
First Workshop 12-1:30 p.m. EDT
- Guaranteed Income Strategies – moving beyond the pandemic—Bharti Wahi, Director, CDF Minnesota
- CDF Freedom Schools®– CDF staff
- Broken Voices: Restorative Justice and Justice Involved Youth – Eric Alexander, founding member, Incarcerated Children’s Advocacy Network, Travis Claybrooks, CEO, Raphah Institute, and Ashlee Sellars, Restorative Justice Diversion Program Coordinator, Raphah Institute
- Queer Liberation, Racial and Economic Justice Organizing–Mandy Carter, co-founder of SONG (Southerners On New Ground), the National Black Justice Coalition and Equality NC, and Shea Howell, co-founder of the James and Grace Lee Boggs Center, co-editor of Riverwise Magazine and communications professor
Freedom Schools National Day of Social Action: Watch Facebook Livestream 1:30-2:00 p.m .
Second Workshop 2-3:30 p.m. EDT
- How Much a Dollar Cost – Derek Hicks, Associate Professor of Religion and Culture, Wake Forest University School of Divinity
- Organizing Listening Parties: Celebrating Your Community’s Memories – Arielle Brown and Mauricio Salgado, Remember 2019
- Growing Up to Be a Child: The Heart of Spiritual Maturity – Dorsey Blake, Faculty Associate, Leadership and Social Transformation, Pacific School of Religion and Presiding Minister, Church for the Fellowship of All Peoples
- Make History. Create Future–Omari Booker, artist and animator, with “Freedom through Art” studios in Nashville and Los Angeles
Wednesday, July 21, 5:30-8:30 EDT
- Intergenerational Movement Building: Ash-Lee Henderson, Co-Director, Highlander Research and Education Center; and Gus Newport, National Council of Elders
- Listening to the Children: Shively Smith, Assistant Professor of New Testament, Boston University School of Theology; and Claudia Smith, student
- Theology and Child Advocacy Plenary: Traci West, James W. Pearsall Professor of Christian Ethics and African American Studies, Drew University Theological School
- Music/Spoken Word
- Listening to the Children and Building Power for Child-Centered Policy: Young people in conversation with Joy Masha, DC Freedom Schools Instructions and Administrative Supervisor CDF Freedom Schools®
- Great Preacher Series: Gail Song Bantum, Lead Pastor, Quest Church, Seattle
- Postlude: Don Lewis
Thursday, July 22:
First Workshop 12-1:30 p.m. EDT
- Liberating Sunday School – Rebecca Davis, Associate Professor of Christian Education, Union Presbyterian Seminary
- Nonviolent Direct Action Organizing – James Lawson, National Council of Elders, and Charlene Sinclair, founder, Center for Race, Religion, and Economic Democracy
- Telling Our Stories of Communities in Crisis – Cristian Franco Jr, rites of passage facilitator and cultural healing mentor, Juan Gomez, co-founder and Executive Director, MILPA, bel Reyes, Innovation Bridge, and Patrick Reyes, Senior Director of Learning Design, Forum for Theological Exploration
- Cash for Kids: Working Towards a Guaranteed Income for Families with Children – Emma Mehrabi, Director of Poverty Policy, CDF
Second Workshop 2-3:30 p.m. EDT
- Organizing a Children’s Sabbath as a Catalyst for Change – Shannon Daley-Harris, Proctor Institute Director, CDF
- Healing Haunted Histories – Elaine Enns and Ched Myers, Co-Directors, Bartimaeus Cooperative Ministries
- Intergenerational Conversation – Ash-Lee Henderson, Co-Director, Highlander Education and Research Center, and Gus Newport, former mayor of Berkeley, California, and member of the National Council of Elders
- To Make a Rest of Motion: Reflecting on These Days – Will Gipson, Emma Jordan Simpson, Candace Simpson, and Jerry Streets, Proctor Institute Co-Chaplains in Residence – list who they are?
Thursday, July 22, 5:30-8:30 EDT
- Intergenerational Movement Building: Ash-Lee Henderson, Co-Director, Highlander Research and Education Center; and James Lawson, civil rights strategist and member of National Council of Elders
- Theology and Child Advocacy Plenary: Rabbi Lydia Medwin, Director of Congregational Engagement and Outreach, The Temple, Atlanta, and Patrick Reyes, Senior Director of Learning Design, Forum for Theological Exploration
- Listening to the Children and Building Power for Child-Centered Policy: Young people in conversation with Shimica Gaskins, Executive Director, CDF-California
- Great Preacher Series: Otis Moss III, Senior Pastor, Trinity United Church of Christ, Chicago
- Closing Charge: Starsky Wilson, CEO and President, Children’s Defense Fund
- Postlude: Don Lewis
Additional Information for Seminarians
CDF’s Samuel DeWitt Proctor Institute for Child Advocacy Ministry offers an opportunity for seminarians, Doctoral students and undergraduates to participate for course credit. In addition, community organizers interested in theological reflections and dialogue will also have a track during this time. These individuals will attend the Proctor Institute’s Dale P. Andrews Freedom Seminary sessions on July 7th from 5:30-8:30 p.m. EDT , Monday July 19th from Noon-3:30 p.m. EDT and 5:30-8:30 p.m. EDT, and Tuesday, July 20th from noon-3:30 p.m. EDT. Seminarians and others participating in the Dale P. Andrews Freedom Seminary will then join in CDF’s Proctor Institute sessions on Tuesday evening through Thursday evening.
Students who are interested in registering for the credit-bearing graduate course should sign up through their seminaries and universities (to pay for and receive credit hours) and register for CDF’s Proctor Institute (including the seminary sessions).
Please visit our seminarians page for detailed information on participating seminaries; seminary faculty and co-facilitators; and course descriptions, core components, and requirements.
We cannot wait to learn, grow, and recommit to making a difference for children with you! Below you will find information for the various ways you can join us for the virtual 2021 Proctor Institute.
Registration is now open to all and free of charge! As you consider which workshops you will select during registration, take time to view the options here.
If you have questions about: