Richmond, I can’t say enough great things about this city. The people are nice, the weather is warm, and the food is fried. I spent the past three years in Chicago finishing up my Masters of Divinity. Every day I looked online to see what was new about Richmond. It seemed that everywhere I looked some new art initiative or urban revitalization was taking place. I wanted to be back here, I felt called to be back here.
While Richmond is incredibly creative and vibrant—it also has a broken history that continues to plague the city. This plague is like an unspoken virus, one that we attempt to sweep under the proverbial carpet rather than facing it head on. Richmond has a problem of division. Quite literally, there have been highways developed to keep those that are without (in under-resourced neighborhoods), separated from those that are with power. Racial tension and systemic injustices lurk around virtually every corner of this city. We must have a vision for something better.
I believe in a Richmond that values equality. I believe in a Richmond where those in the most under-resourced neighborhoods are getting the very best education. That parents and families would want to keep their kids in the city because it offers the best opportunity for diverse growth and guidance. I believe in a Richmond that quite literally, tears down the walls of inequity and builds up circles of community. I want to see more space created for people to use their gifts to be a catalyst of renewal in this place.
I want to see lives transformed and to help foster a movement of God’s kingdom reigning “in RVA as it is in Heaven.” This is why I'm called to this city, Richmond--home.