Amid the ongoing pandemic, many black history celebrations have had to transition to an online format, changing many annual traditions. 

“Younger audiences are used to the technology, but I think it takes away some of the power to be relational to people,” said Pastor Adrion Roberson, who spoke as a guest as part of the Humanity First discussion series.

As Wyandotte county was one of the largest Covid-19 hotspots in March of 2020, Roberson said he had to stop preaching in person to his small congregation.

“We lost about thirty people to about one location when this kicked off,” Roberson said. “According to the Barna report more and more young people are not going to be going back to buildings of faith. It is unfortunate really that so many young people are questioning their faith. It behooves us to find ways to reconnect on a personal level and to use this technology to stay interconnected…It really is a struggle to stay connected to a value system like that.”

Another speaker, Chris Singleton, a former baseball player for the Chicago Cubs, is scheduled to come speak on behalf of the Union Activities Council from 7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. via Zoom. Singleton’s mother was a victim of the Charleston church shooting in 2015 and he has since travelled the country stressing the importance of personal faith and the power of love with his phrase, “Love is stronger than hate”.

“It has been harder to find ways to celebrate black culture and stories with everything that has been going on, but the fact that we are trying to make something happen should say something,” said Maycee Kingsley, sophomore elementary education major and chair of the Talks and Topics committee. “With all that Chris has been through and all that pressure people in small communities face to celebrate black heritage month (we thought he would be a good choice) … I find that people are more willing to come and speak because things are so difficult right now. People can benefit from that motivation that comes from having those speakers.”

To register for the Chris Singleton event visit https://emporia.campuslabs.com/engage/account/login?returnUrl=/engage/event/6708115.

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