Jesus said, “The first in importance is, ‘Listen, Israel: The Lord your God is one; so love the Lord God with all your passion and prayer and intelligence and energy.’ And here is the second: ‘Love others as well as you love yourself.’ There is no other commandment that ranks with these.”

Mark 12:29-31 (The Message)

Self-Care in Mind, Body, Soul & Spirit

Yes, Black folks can have healthy lives, reside in safe spaces, and promote healthy communities. Our lives may be a mess; but, they do not have to be.  As the scripture says (to paraphrase): we are first to love God with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength; secondly, we are to love our neighbors as ourselves. To do this, we should strive to be at our best (whatever our situation or circumstance). We need to engage in “self-care” in mind, body, soul, and spirit.

Circumstances for many African Americans make the topic of self-care tenuous at best, and non-existent for most scholars and professionals. Self-care, which is care provided “for you, by you,” occurs through daily practice of the scriptures, prayer and serving yourself as well as others. It’s about identifying your own needs and taking steps to meet them. It is taking the time to do some of the activities that nurture you in addition to nurturing others.

Self-care means “Black Lives Matter” enough to seek and know of the goodness of God; to confront and have victory over the daily trauma of sin and evil that Black folks deal with whether that trauma take the forms of physical, spiritual, mental, or emotional challenges.

This conference will address effective practices (mental, physical, emotional and spiritual) to cope with trauma and to live godly resilient lives.  First, we should seek the kingdom of righteousness and allow ourselves to be empowered through Jesus Christ, our healer. Then, we can build a foundation of resistance and resiliency through the scriptures. Additionally, there are practical applications we can adopt which move us towards wellness. The “Black Scholars and Professionals Matter” conference, April 6-7, 2018, will focus on the kind of self-care that promotes wellness and health in body, mind, soul, and spirit. Join us for this exciting exploration!

About Our Keynote Speaker

Dr. Vanessa Wynder Quainoo is an Associate Professor with a joint appointment in the Departments of Communication Studies and Africana Studies. Dr. Quainoo’s primary interests are social rhetoric and race discourse. She has a profound regard for the power of the spoken word and the speaker’s ability to create community and shared justice.

Along with her Communication degrees, Dr. Quainoo has a degree in theology and sustained interest in the African American Church. She is an ordained minister and serves as a consultant for many Church organizations within the African American Faith Community. An international director for a West African women’s empowerment organization, Dr. Quainoo travels extensively to West Africa. At present, her research includes the analysis of sermonic texts by African American women clergy and the role of the African American spiritual in the works of Maya Angelou.

She is also the author of CRY ELMINA, an exploration of the socio-psychological and personal stresses of Africans who were captured and held in the dungeon imprisonment of the Elmina Castle in Elmina, West Africa. Those who survived Elmina were shipped on the trans-atlantic journey to the Americas and Europe and sold into slavery. Dr. Quainoo has performed excerpts of CRY ELMINA at several universities, conferences and most recently in Ghana at the Elmina Castle as a part of the 50th year independence celebration of the nation of Ghana. Rev. Dr. Vanessa Quainoo is the senior pastor of New Covenant Church International.

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Invite Others

Please invite your colleagues who may be interested in attending the conference. Your personal invitation is one of the most effective ways to grow the network of students and faculty who hear about the conference. Thanks for helping us get the word out! A printable postcard is available.