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Walking Through Samaria with Jay Stewart and Derrick Hawkins

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In the latest episode of Walking Through Samaria, Derrick Hawkins and Jay Stewart shed light on the impact that their improbable joining of forces has had on their united congregations to preemptively bring about healing in regards to racial reconciliation.

Meet Jay Stewart and Derrick Hawkins, an unlikely pairing of pastors from North Carolina. Stewart, a fiftysomething White man, and Hawkins, a thirtysomething Black man, knew that something needed to be done to speak to the racial rift among Christians.

The spotlight found them when a 43-year-old Black man was shot to death by a Charlotte policeman in September 2016, just after their improbable joining of forces. But the two held fast, believing that God had united their congregations preemptively to bring about healing. 

“I want to be voice for racial reconciliation,” Hawkins says, “but I also want to be a voice for racial equity.” His decision did not come without cost. “I took a lot of flak and controversy for the decision and the stand I made … but I believe it is imperative for us to have these conversations.” 

Said Stewart: “We have to be willing to cross the road, the whole premise for this podcast. A lot of people don’t understand the incredible amount of racial tension that existed between Jews and Samaritans. … It’s been costly for Pastor Derrick to make the decision he made. It’s been costly for me. I’ve had people quit our church because I’ve used the #Black Lives Matter.”

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