Many of us are learning the stories of Gutierrez, the Boff brothers, Segundo, Sobrino, Ellacuria, and others for the first time. This week, while we were reading their stories, I had the opportunity to sit down with Rev. Dr. Peter Wherry of Mayfield Memorial Missionary Baptist Church to listen to his first encounters with Jon Sobrino, sitting in the very room where Ellacuria and four others were murdered (story we read about in Ch. 4). The words Peter uses to describe how he felt, "their blood cried out from the ground." These words echo the Genesis text in which God says that Abel's blood cries out from the ground, after he'd been murdered by his brother, Cain.
These words haunted the Deep South Pilgrims as we traveled through rural Alabama on the Deep South Pilgrimage, knowing that the very trees we saw could have been the execution site for African Americans who were lynched in the Jim Crow era. Dr. Wherry's application of this Genesis text to both the lynching era and the beginnings of Latin American liberation thought is a powerful connection that makes me wonder, when will we ever learn? When will we bring an end to the senseless violence, oppression, and death that results from greed and insecurity?
During our conversation, Peter also engages Miguel's theology of sin and pushes back a little to the notion that liberation theology always has an orthopraxy to orthodoxy structure. AND... continuing the conversation about where liberation theology actually begins, Peter goes WAY back and finds the origins in North Carolina!
Tune in to learn more!