kendrickarthurkemp@gmail.com

REV. KENDRICK ARTHUR KEMP, LMSW, MDiv

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BLACK LIBERATION THEOLOGY OF DISABILITY MINISTRY

As a seasoned professional speaker, Kendrick has participated in more than 50 speaking engagements over the past four years, sharing his very personal story of the power of finding faith at the center of evolving through life as a black man living with a disability. Articulating in his own theological voice the emerging subject matter of the crucially important nexus between disability and Black Liberation Theology – out of the depths of theological wisdom – he presents his work in Black Liberation Theology of Disabilities across the nation to empower and transform perceptions. Mentored and supported by the late founder of Black Liberation Theology, Dr. James Cone, and by Dr. Cornell West, Kendrick has been invited to speak at organizations such as American Academy of Religion, Black Lives Matter, Rice University, Congo Protestant University, Seattle University, among many other

Expertise

Minister | Black Liberation Theology of Disability Founder | Professional Speaker | Contributing Panelist | Discussion Facilitator | Published Author | Scholar | Thought Leader | Social Activist | Disability Consultant | Advocate for Equality 

Awards

Honorable Mention  Prometheus Social Enterprise Awards | November 19, 2020

Professional Speaking Ministry

Assembly Worship Planning Committee | World Council of Churches

Ecumenical Disability Advocates Network

Ordination, January 9, 2021 | Judson Memorial Church | American Baptist Churches of Metro New York

Mission Trip of NYC Metro Area’s American Baptist Church | Puerto Rico | June 22 – 30, 2018 

Traveled to help rebuild and provide pastoral care, as well as fellowship with our siblings in Puerto Rico 

Barrier-Free Living | Bronx, NYC | September – October 2016 Field Placement 

Held one-on-one clients and ran groups for people living with disabilities 

Met with team of fellow social workers weekly to develop individualized plans 

St. Mary’s Nursing Home | NYC | Fall 2014 – Spring 2015

Champlain, HIV and Hepatitis C Residents 

Conducted one-on-one counseling 

Facilitated weekly group counseling with 8 to 10 residents 

Judson Memorial Church | NYC | Fall 2014 – Spring 2015 Community Minister 

Organized and directed a community Gospel concert
Provided weekly report updates to clergy staff meetings
Provided Pastoral Care to congregants to address spiritual needs
Assisted to worship liturgy including participating in funeral services 

Southern Tier Independence Center | Binghamton, NY | September 2009 – May 2010 Social Work Intern 

  • Counseled consumers one-on-one regarding various issues 
  • Planned, coordinated, developed, and led state-wide Traumatic Brain Injury Conversation Day; tasks included event 

planning, fundraising, publicity, planning topics, securing notable speakers, and organizing itinerary 

  • Attended numerous conferences regarding disability issues 

PROFESSIONAL SPEAKING MINISTRY 

Guest Speaker, Institute on Theology and Disability Doctoral Seminar | Duke University | Zoom | April 22, 2021

•Shared my story with Doctoral of Ministry students and how I created Black Liberation Theology of Disability.

Panelist, Access Denied: A Panel on Disability Justice in Academia | Brown University | Zoom | February 1, 2021

•Spoke on a distinguished panel about living with a disability and navigating academia.

Guest, The Judith Heumann Perspective | January 18, 2021

•Interviewed with Judith and shared my personal story and how I formed Black Liberation Theology of Disability.

Panelist, Roundtable Discussion on Disability Inclusion in the Workplace | United Nations | December 3, 2020

•Spoke on a panel and talked about living with disabilities in the workplace in a global context. We encouraged the UN to hire those who live with disabilities.  

Panelist, Black Disabled Lives Matter Panel, L’Arche North Carolina | Zoom | September 7, 2020

•Presented on the need to include Black people living with disabilities in our conversations about social justice.

Guest Speaker, Interfaith Dialogue Dinner Virtual Program | Syracuse University | Zoom | October 14, 2020

•Shared about Black Liberation Theology of Disability and the importance of the conversation for social justice.

Guest Speaker, The New Social Environment | The Brooklyn Rail Podcast | August 20, 2020

• Spoke about Black Liberation Theology of Disability and the importance of the conversation for social justice.

Panelist, Our Worth, Our Humanity: Disability Justice as a Spiritual Practice | Crip Camp | Zoom | August 16, 2020

•Presented on worth for people living with disabilities and how they are part of the fabric of humanity

Guest Speaker, Seattle University | Seattle, WA | March 14, 2019 

• Presented on “Race, Disability, and Christianity: The Complexity of an Intersectional Theology” at Seattle University’s undergraduate class, “Transforming Spirituality.” 

Guest Speaker, Union Theological Seminary | NYC | February 25, 2019 

Spoke before two Field Education Classes with a focus on Disability Issues in Ministry, but more specifically about Practical Black Liberation Theology of Disabilities and how it is integrated in daily life. 

Guest Speaker, Judson Memorial Church | NYC | February 24, 2019 

Invited to speak during “The People’s Judson” about the origin of my Theology, the Black Liberation Theology of Disability, Kendrick shared his own personal story of suffering two strokes and finding himself in a dark place with a new reality as a black man living with a new body. 

Guest Panelist/Speaker, Union Theological Seminary | NYC | February 22, 2019 

Contributed on a panel called Shades of Black: Finding My Voice, where Kendrick shared the wisdom and courage that the late Dr. James H. Cone expounded on him with his theological insight to create Black Liberation Theology of Disability. 

Guest Speaker, Congo Protestant University | Democratic Republic of Congo | February 10 – 15, 2019 

Invited by Dr. Micheline Kamba to educate students and faculty in her Master’s Program of Social Transformation about the Black Liberation Theology of Disability Movement, specifically with a focus on the Bible and Congolese people living with disabilities. 

Guest Speaker, Fort Washington Collegiate Church | NYC | October 14, 2018 

Spoke with conversation partner Reverend Kelso during Access and Disability Awareness Week about Black Liberation Theology of Disabilities. 

Guest Presenter, Aging Resources, Consultation and Help Committee| Ithaca, NY | September 30, 2018 

In the topic title “Lord Will You Com Guide My Feet While I’m Running This Race – The Intersection of Race and Disability,” Kendrick spoke on the intersection of race and disability from the perspective of a black man living with a disability in the 21st Century. 

Guest Presenter, St. James AME Church | Ithaca, NY | June 22. 2018 

In a presentation on “All Black Lives Matter,” Kendrick spoke about living with a disability and how the Ithaca Community helped me, including Cornell Africana Studies mentors Dr. James Turner, Ithaca College, GIAC, and Southside Center, all of which had a big influence in my life. 

Guest Minister, Finger Lakes Residential Center| Lansing, NY | June 3, 2018 

Presented on Inner Forgivenessto a group of males who had been confined in the criminal justice system. 

Speaker, Black Liberation Theology of Disabilities, Auburn Theological Seminary | NYC | May 31, 2018 

In “All Black Lives Matter,” Kendrick spoke about how my life changed by the two major strokes he experienced in his 20s, which impacted him in profound ways, as well as how “disability” is an issue of deep impact for people of color. This included an honorary discussion of the influence of Dr. James Cone, Kendrick’s mentor. 

Guest Speaker and Presenter, Union Theological Seminary | NYC | April 22, 2018 

Gave a presentation at the Black Lives Matter Ithaca Chapter titled, “All Black Lives Matter: A Theological Response to Living with a Disability.” 

Guest Speaker, Union Theological Seminary | NYC | March 5, 2018 

Spoke before the Field Education Class about Practical Black Liberation Theology of Disabilities and how it is integrated in daily life. 

Guest Preacher, Church on the Hill | NYC | February 25, 2018 

Gave a sermon on “A Glimpse into Living with Disabilities in the Black Church.” 

Guest Preacher, Manhattan Mennonite Church | NYC | February 11, 2018 

During Black History Month, Kendrick preached on the topic of Black Liberation Theology of Disabilities. 

Presenter, Union Theological Seminary | NYC | January 11, 2018 

Presented in Dr. Wilson-Barnes’ class: “Is There Room for Me? Congregational Life, Disabilities, and Creating Safe Spaces” and Black Liberation Theology of Disabilities. 

Guest Speaker, Lenox Street Baptist Church | NYC | November 4, 2017 

Gave the invocation for the New York City Metro Area’s American Baptist Church Annual Meeting. 

Inspirational Keynote Speaker, JobPath| East Harlem, NYC | September 15, 2017 

Gave an inspirational speech to direct support professionals at JobPath.

Inspirational Speaker, Youth Engaging in Service, JobPath | Central Park, NYC | July 27, 2017 

Spoke about living with a disability and my Black Liberation Theology of Disabilities to the First OCC of Montclair Youth Group. 

Presenter, Summer Institute on Theology and Disability | Azusa, CA | June 5-8, 2017 

Led a workshop about “Black Liberation Theology in an Age of Terror.”

Guest Speaker, 2017 Graduation, Thompkins-Cortland Community College | Dryden, NY | May 25, 2017 

Acted as Invocator at the 2017 Graduation Ceremony.

Guest Speaker, Union Theology Seminary | NYC | March 30, 2017 

Participated with students in Liberation Theologies and Worship class led by Prof. Claudio Carvalhaes, Associate Professor of Worship, and via Skype with Prof. Sharon V. Betcher, author of Spirit and the Politics of Disablement. 

Speaker/Facilitator, Urban Innovations | Harlem, NYC | March 27, 2017 

Participated and led group of 20 black people with disabilities in a lively discussion using my personal narrative and four framing questions on dignity, getting help and support, breaking through isolation patterns, and developing courage to break out of our own condition and circumstances. 

Guest Speaker, Union Theological Seminary | NYC | March 6-7, 2017 

Spoke about Black Liberation Theology of Disabilities before two Field Education classes engaging in practical ministry. 

Guest Speaker, Rice University | Houston, TX | February 16, 2017 

Led a discussion on Black Liberation Theology of Disabilities in Dr. Zoe Wool’s Disabilities class. Guest Panelist, 

American Academy of Religion | San Antonio, TX | November 22, 2016 

Based on my 2015 Black Liberation Theology of Disabilities conference at Union Theology Seminary, Kendrick presented the experiences of blackness and disability. Other panelists included Dr. Nyasha Junior, Dr. Rev. Monica A. Coleman, Dr. Rev. Garth Baker-Fletcher, and Dr. Rev. Pamela Lightsey. 

Guest Speaker, New York Theology Seminary | NYC | July 26, 2016 

Presented Black Liberation Theology of Disabilities to the Parish Ministry and Administration 101 class and discussed his article, “Beyond Ramps and Special Seating: Practicing a Black Liberation Theology of Disability.” 

Guest Speaker, St. Paul’s & St. Andrew’s United Methodist Churches | Manhattan, NYC | May 15, 2016 

Spoke to the United Methodist Women’s group about the Methodist Church and people with disabilities. 

Published and Contributed Works

Kemp, Kendrick. “Where is God in these times?” World Council of Churches Blog. October 9, 2020 https://www.oikoumene.org/blog/where-is-god-in-these-times

Kemp, Kendrick. “Good News for the Blind.” Unashamedly Black, Unapologetically Christian: A Devotional for Black Faith and Life, edited by Lee Hall-Perkins and Jana Hall-Perkins, Faith First Press, 2016, pp. 39- 42. 

Kemp, Kendrick, with Michael Lovaglio. “Beyond Ramps and Special Seating: Practicing a Black Liberation Theology of Disability.” ReligiousSocialism.Org, July 21, 2016, https://www.religioussocialism.org/ beyond_ramps_and_special_seating_practicing_a_black_liberation_theology_of_ disability. 

Duncan, Mel. “From Our Community: Race/Disability Are Starting Points for Redemption.” Access Press: Minnesota’s Disability Community News Source, January 28, 2016, http://www.accesspress.org/ blog/2016/01/08/from-our-community-racedisability-are-starting-points-for-redemption. 

EDUCATION & LICENSES
Union Theological Seminary – Master of Divinity

Binghamton University, State University of New York – MSW in Social Work 

Syracuse University – BS in Social Work
Licensed Master Social Worker, No. 094254-1, Certificate No. 8835453 

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