Wednesday, April 20
Workshop: Nonviolent de-escalation in the midst of crisis, Eagle’s Landing, Hawkins-Conard Student Center
“Last” Lecture: Your Faith for Justice, Ridenour Room, College of Business
Thursday, April 21
Conversation: The New Civil Rights Movement After Ferguson, Ronk Lecture Theater, College of Education
Sermon: Praying with your Feet, The Well, Miller Chapel
"It is exciting for us to have Michelle Higgins coming to campus," said Peter Slade, chair of the Religion Department. "Here at Ashland University we are always trying to make connections between our faith and the communities we live in and serve. Michelle will bring her wealth of experience and wisdom and help us understand the responsibilities and opportunities we have as Christians to engage with these issues of justice and race." Michelle will be speaking in Dr. Slade's class Religion and the Civil Rights Movement. "It is important for us to realize that the movement didn't stop with the passage of the Civil Rights Act or the assassination of Dr. King," Slade said. "This is a living history that calls people of faith to action today."
The Director of Worship and Outreach at South City Church in the Shaw neighborhood of south St. Louis, Michelle is actively engaged in the #BlackLivesMatter movement. She has participated in civil disobedience, leadership development, logistics and administrative support in both sacred and secular spaces.
Michelle is the Director of Faith for Justice, a Christian advocacy group founded in 2014 dedicated to continuing the biblical story of activism. Faith for Justice promotes and leads public justice actions and events that connect faith communities to the movements that seek to dignify and humanize Black lives.
Though working primarily as a local organizer, Michelle’s work is challenging the wider church. She rose to national prominence with her plenary speech at Urbana 2015, the annual InterVarsity Student Missions Conference. The New York Times commented “in her wide-ranging comments about social justice, Ms. Higgins did little to make her speech more palatable.” The Washington Post concurred,“Michelle Higgins has been making waves.” The Evangelical publication Christianity Today “described her historic speech as "powerful and prophetic testimony.”
Michelle holds an M.Div from Covenant Theological Seminary in Saint Louis and lives in North City with her husband Sean Loftin, and their two children - Moses and Matilda
InterVarsity made this short video introduction to Michelle and her work: