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About Howard Thurman
Howard Thurman (1900-1981) was the first black dean of Marsh Chapel at Boston University and cofounder of the Church for the Fellowship of All Peoples in San Francisco, California, the first inter-racially copastored church in America.
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In this classic theological treatise, the acclaimed theologian and religious leader Howard Thurman (1900-1981) demonstrates how the gospel may be read as a manual of resistance for the poor and disenfranchised. Jesus is a partner in the pain of the oppressed and the example of His life offers a solution to ending the descent into moral nihilism. Hatred does not empower--it decays. Only through self-love and love of one another can God's justice prevail.
Howard Thurman was a singular man—a minister, philosopher, and educator whose vitality and vision touched the lives of countless people of all races, faiths, and cultures.
In his moving autobiography, Dr. Thurman tells of his lonely years growing up in a segregated town, where the nurturing black community and a profound interest in nature provided his deepest solace. That same young man would go on to become one of the great spiritual leaders of our time. Over the course of his extraordinary career, Thurman served as a dean of Rankin Chapel and professor of theology at Howard University; minister of the interdenominational Fellowship Church in San Francisco, of which he was a cofounder; dean of Marsh Chapel of Boston University; and honorary canon of the Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine in New York. He was deeply engaged in work with the Howard Thurman Educational Trust until his death in 1981. This is Thurman’s story in his own inspiring words.
“Inspiring . . . a tale of trial and triumph. It should be read by everyone.” —Vernon Jordan, president of the National Urban League
“Now we can peer with delight into the soul of this master and grasp some of the sense of religious genius which has been the source of all that blessed teaching.” —Rabbi Joseph B. Glaser, former executive vice president, Central Conference of American Rabbis
“The reader’s admiration for this educator and spiritual healer grows naturally as the story unfolds.” —The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
“Thurman leads his readers . . . with an air of gracious ease and imperturbable dignity.” —Kirkus Reviews
In Deep is the Hunger: Meditations for Apostles of Sensitiveness, Dr. Thurman provides the devotional reader with twenty-five working papers for meditations, which grew out of his weekly messages at The Church for the Fellowship of All Peoples. The book is divided into four parts: (1) A sense of history; (2) A sense of self; (3) A sense of presence; and (4) For the quiet time.
“The attempt is not to set forth a connected series of observations or reflections, but rather to throw a shaft of light on aspects of thought, of life, of religious experience, as they are encountered in the daily round.”—Howard Thurman, Preface
“This is a book of rare quality, indeed, admirably suited for use during the season for personal or group devotions…Dr. Thurman has an unusual and extraordinary gift for using the penetrating word, phrase and illustration…This book and the meditations deal with problems everyone can all relate to…One of the best devotional books of the year.”—Kirkus Review
These are five sermons on certain dilemmas of Jesus, growing out of temptations which he faced. They are not five lectures. They are not five critical essays. They are five sermons, having as their fundamental purpose the illumination of the imagination, the stirring of the heart, and the challenge to live life meaningfully.
We see the Master as he struggled to find a way which will be for him The Way in which he can walk in utter harmony with the Will of his Father and the purpose of life. This too is what we seek, and in his answer we may find precious clues for ourselves. He was tempted as all men are tempted and his example leaves the whole world in his debt.
The publishing of this little book in a special, limited first edition, designed and printed by Lawton Kennedy of San Francisco, is the fulfillment of a long cherished dream which we have had for many years, since this artist-publisher began printing the annual Christmas and other special occasion cards which I have written for the Church for the Fellowship of All Peoples in San Francisco, and later for Marsh Chapel in Boston. With customary grace, Eugene Exman, of Harper and Brothers, has granted me temporary release from my contract in order to make possible a unique Lawton Kennedy production.
It so happens that this was the last sermon-series which I presented in Marsh Chapel, marking the end of a nine-year period of active responsibility for that part of the religious life of Boston University, as expressed in the preaching and ministry of Marsh Chapel, and the beginning of a two-year leave for an extended ministry in the service of the University, to other areas of the United States and countries abroad.
The material presented here was later used as the basis of the Theme Devotional Addresses at the meeting of the 20th General Council of the United Church of Canada, including the Congregational, Methodist, and Presbyterian denominations, held at the Metropolitan United Church, London, Ontario, September twelfth through the nineteenth. Significantly, the addresses delivered before this inspiring body marked the first major assignment in the wider ministry of the next two years.