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Johnson C. Smith Theological Seminary Builds Reparations Planning Capacity with 90,000-Dollar Grant Award from Trusts Including Ford Foundation and Henry Luce Foundation

By Trice Edney Communications

Atlanta, Georgia – October 12, 2022 – Johnson C. Smith Theological Seminary (JCSTS) has been awarded grants totaling $90,000 by some of our national’s most prominent trusts including the Ford Foundation and the Henry Luce Foundation. The yearlong grant will enable JCSTS to convene national conversations that test the interest and capacity of diverse organizations in developing sustainable approaches to Reparations.

“If racism is the opposite of what God intended for humanity, then the work of repair — which includes Reparations — must become a more intentional part of the way forward,” said Paul Roberts, JCSTS President. “With the support and partnership of these three foundations, JCSTS is now positioned to do something we’ve longed for: to help leverage the moral authority of the Black Church in fostering public interest in repairing the historic breach of racial discrimination in this country.”

The current landscape of economic inequity across racial groups remains unabated in U.S. culture. However, there does appear to be political will at various state and national levels for reparations planning, and history shows a robust truth and reconciliation planning process can lead to sustained change. JCSTS will invite African American leaders representing HBCU’s, churches, seminaries, organizations, and allies, to engage in this process. Specific topics deemed critical to these conversations are effective advocacy, scalability of various approaches, best practices, and funding. Johnson C. Smith Theological Seminary is grateful to these visionary foundations for their historic support as it endeavors to create safe space to think comprehensively and strategically about this important subject.

For further information about this Reparations Planning process, please contact our Reparations Coordinating Committee at or visit website at

About Johnson C. Smith Theological Seminary
Johnson C. Smith Theological Seminary is celebrating its 155th anniversary of “advancing communities of faith, justice, and compassion through innovation in theological education.” JCSTS’ signature core curriculum is 100% digital and is grounded in social justice. Visit website at

About the Ford Foundation
The Ford Foundation is an independent organization working to address inequality and build a future grounded in justice. For more than 85 years, it has supported visionaries on the frontlines of social change worldwide, guided by its mission to strengthen democratic values, reduce poverty and injustice, promote international cooperation, and advance human achievement. Today, with an endowment of $16 billion, the foundation has headquarters in New York and 10 regional offices across Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East.

About the Henry Luce Foundation
The Henry Luce Foundation seeks to enrich public discourse by promoting innovative scholarship, cultivating new leaders, and fostering international understanding. Established in 1936 by Henry R. Luce, the co-founder and editor-in-chief of Time, Inc., the Luce Foundation advances its mission through grantmaking and leadership programs in the fields of Asia, higher education, religion and theology, art, and public policy.

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