Gary B. Agee, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Church History at Anderson University School of Theology
Agee received his Ph.D. in Theology from the University of Dayton, in Dayton, Ohio. Before teaching at Anderson University School of Theology, Agee taught at Xavier University and the University of Dayton, both in Ohio.
Agee is ordained in the Church of God serving the Hopewell Church of God, in West Chester, Ohio and currently serves as the Lead Pastor of the Beechwood Church of God, Gratis, Ohio.
Agee has written widely. His book A Cry for Justice, Daniel Rudd and his Life in Black Catholicism, Journalism and Activism, 1854-1933 Fayetteville, AR.: University of Arkansas Press, 2011, has received wide acclaim in both academic and historical circles. He is also the author of A Giant in the Valley, Evangelist Thomas Clifford Hutchinson, Why He Wouldn’t Quit, Reformation Publishers, 1997 and The Sunday After, Living with Tragedy this Side of America’s Worst Day, Gratis, Ohio: Spirit Wind Books, 2002. Agee’s newest book is a novel, Will in Frozen Country, Acclaim Press, release date May 1, 2014. This novel recounts Kentucky's worst flash flood that occurred on July 5, 1939.
Lecture Title and Overview:
“Seeing the Church of God in Black and White: The Reformation Movement and the Color Line, 1880-1920”
The desire on the part of Daniel Sidney Warner and other early members of the Church of God Reformation Movement was to worship God in holiness in a church undivided by sectarian divisions. Designated as “radical” by some, early Reformation pioneers braved ridicule in order to “come out” of denominationalism. But in 1881, as the Movement’s message of oneness began to be proclaimed, a much more entrenched and divisive force made itself visible. Tennessee was the first of the states to enact separate coach legislation forcing blacks to ride in separate train cars. Over the next decade, Florida, Mississippi, Texas, Alabama, Georgia, and Arkansas followed the lead of Tennessee in segregating the races. By the turn of the century, the color line had been drawn in virtually all segments of southern society, including public houses of worship. These two countervailing forces would result in a rethinking of the Reformation Movement’s message of unity. Making some sense of this period in the Movement’s history is an important step in learning how to model Christian unity in a fractured and often dangerously polarized world.
Date and Location:
- Tuesday, March 11, 2014
- Kane Dining Room in the Olt Student Center of Anderson University
- Cost is $5. Seating is limited; please make reservations early.
For reservations or questions, contact the Office of the Dean at the Anderson University School of Theology at (765) 641-4033, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.