One man's story interweaves with many of the crucial social issues of the past fifty years
Building the Beloved Community
Maurice McCrackin's Life for Peace and Civil Rights
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Judith A. Bechtel and Robert M. Coughlin, foreword by Daniel Berrigan
This biography of Maurice McCrackin, now in his mid-eighties, chronicles how one man’s story interweaves with many of the crucial social issues of the past fifty years: integration, civil rights, McCarthyism, schooling, the arms build-up, poverty, treatment of prisoners, and homelessness, among others.
As pastor to various congregations throughout the midwest, McCrackin chose social change as his mission and addressed international issues in his sermons in order to make connections between the global and the personal. As an active participant in the Fellowship of Reconciliation, he found ways to inject pacifism into the daily activities of a poor Cincinnati neighborhood. An effective leader and negotiator, his ability to achieve integration within his environment was due to his understanding of collaboration and mutual empowerment as well as his gentleness and good humor. From World War II through recent liberation struggles in Central America, tumultuous events provided a stage for Maurice McCrackin’s ministry.
Building the Beloved Community details the terrible price Reverend Maurice McCrackin paid for his peace and civil rights activismdefrocking, public vilification, numerous jailingsand the widespread honor and vindication he has earned in recent years for his lifetime of service.
Foreword Daniel Berrigan, S.J.
Judith A. Bechtel is Associate Professor of Literature and Language at Northern Kentucky University.
Robert M. Coughlin is Associate Professor of English at Lakeland Community College in Mentor, Ohio.