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God with UsLived Theology and the Freedom Struggle in Americus, Georgia, 1942-1976$
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Ansley L. Quiros

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781469646763

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469646763.001.0001

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The Theological Struggle Comes to Church

(p.140) Chapter Six Kneeling-In
God with Us

Ansley L. Quiros

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter describes the rise of the kneel-in movement and the moral confrontation it provoked. Envisioned by the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, kneel-ins protested segregation in sacred spaces and highlighted the theological foundations of the freedom struggle. The chapter tells the story of the kneel-in movement in Atlanta and, in the summer of 1965, in Americus. The kneel-ins at First Baptist Church and First Methodist Church in Americus were covered by the national press, provoking a firestorm of criticism and praise, as recorded in letters sent to the church. Kneel-ins also sparked a crisis within white Protestantism, particularly for the Georgia Methodist Conference and Bishop John O. Smith.

Keywords:   Kneel-in, Kneel-in movement, SNCC, Methodist Conference, Methodist Discipline, Bishop John. O Smith

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