Tuesday, September 19, 2017 - 11:25am to Wednesday, September 20, 2017 - 12:30pm
Goodson Chapel, Duke Divinity School (Map)
Kaznee Phipps

Join the Office of Black Church Studies at Duke Divinity School for our annual African American Alumni Day reunion and Gardner C. Taylor Lecture Series. This will be an opportunity for communal reflection on the ministry and mission of the Black Church “to serve this present age,” and for prayer, networking, and celebration of Divinity School alumni and the work of the Office of Black Church Studies.

Gardner C. Taylor Lecture Series

Since 1975, the Gardner C. Taylor Lecture Series has brought outstanding black preachers and pastors to Duke University. The lecture is named in honor of the Rev. Dr. Gardner C. Taylor (1918-2015), known as “the dean of preaching.”

Our 2017 guest preacher and lecturer is the Rev. Dr.  John W. Kinney, pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church, Va.

Dr. Kinney will deliver a sermon and lecture on Tuesday, and a sermon on Wednesday.

African American Alumni Day

The Alumni Day events will begin Tuesday morning with a “State of the Black Church Address” by Rev. Cheryl Moore, M.Div. '96, senior pastor at Zion Temple in Durham, N.C.  This address will focus on the historical, present, and future direction of the Office of Black Church Studies and the legacy of African-American church leaders and theologians.



Dr. John W. Kinney, a native of Wheeling, W.Va., received B.A degree from Marshall University, and M.Div degree from Virginia Union University.  He was awarded the M.Phil. degree from Columbia University and the Ph.D. from Columbia University and Union Theological Seminary in New York.  Kinney has devoted himself to the pursuit of excellence in theological training and preparation and has distinguished himself as a systematic theologian, academician, and administrator in a career that spans some forty years. Kinney has lectured extensively across the U.S. and in Africa.  He is recognized for his theological constructions addressing the designed harmony in creation and the subsequent fragmentation and separation with particular attention to racism, sexism, and materialism. Kinney has served as the pastor of the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Beaverdam, Va. for more than forty years. There, his vision and spiritual guidance have resulted in a growing ministry within the church. His work has also embraced and enhanced the community at large. In addition, he has been involved in global ministries through assisting in the establishment and enhancement of theological education centers in Ghana and Zambia. Through his role as a pastor, he has initiated support for ministries in Kenya, Cameroon, Ghana, and Haiti.

Pastor Cheryl D. Moore served as the youth pastor at Friendship Missionary Baptist Church in Charlotte, N.C., from 1996 to 2004.  Known as the “hip hop preacher,” she impacted countless lives of young people across the nation. In 2004, Pastor Moore relocated from Charlotte to Durham, N.C., where she currently serves as the senior pastor of Zion Temple. She is the first female pastor of this church in its 107-year history, and it has experienced exponential growth on all levels under her leadership. Zion Temple has become a magnet for persons of all backgrounds who are on the fringes of life—recovering addicts, victims of abuse, and broken families. Pastor Moore earned a B.A. in English literature and an M.Div. from Duke Divinity School. She is the founder and president of the YADAH School of Theology and The Pink Power Puncher Empowerment Group. She is also a prolific lyricist, writer, and sports enthusiast. In 2008, Pastor Moore was honored by the National Congress of Black Women at their 24th Annual Awards brunch with its first ever Sojourner Truth Award for her community efforts.


Tuesday, Sept. 19

  • 8:30 – 9:00 a.m.
    Registration and check-in, breakfast reception, and gathering with current students and alumni (Alumni Memorial Common Room)
  • 9:00 –10:15a.m.
    “State of the Black Church Address”: Pastor Cheryl Moore (Alumni Memorial Common Room)
  • 11:25 a.m.
    Worship, Rev. Dr. John W. Kinney (Goodson Chapel)
  • 12:30 p.m.
    Gardner C. Taylor Alumni & Community Lunch (Alumni Memorial Common Room)
  • 2:00 p.m.
    Gardner C. Taylor Lecture: Rev. Dr. John W. Kinney

Wednesday, Sept. 20

  • 11:25 a.m.
    Worship, Rev. Dr. John W. Kinney preaching (Goodson Chapel)


All participants are responsible for making their own hotel accommodations. We have arranged for special rates at the Hilton Durham to assist you. In order to receive these special rates, be sure to refer to “Duke Divinity School – African American Alumni Day” when you call to reserve your room.

Hilton Durham near Duke University: $109/single nightly rate, plus applicable taxes. Call (800) HILTONS (445-8667) and refer to the African American Alumni Room Block or Group Code: DDAA by Sept. 8. You can also make reservations online

An additional list of properties is provided for your information:

Additional hotel information may be found at the Durham Convention & Visitors Bureau.


Parking & Transportation

Pre-arranged parking will be available on campus during the event for an additional charge as part of the registration process. Advance registration and payment is required.

Air Transportation

The nearest airport is the Raleigh-Durham International Airport (RDU), a 20-minute drive to Duke University. Many area hotels offer shuttle service to and from the hotel. Super Shuttle Service is available from RDU airport to Duke University and the surrounding area. You can make a credit card reservation online prior to your arrival to Duke. There will also be taxi cabs waiting outside each terminal of the airport.

Rail Transportation

The Durham Train Station offers Amtrak service to and from Charlotte, Raleigh, Washington D.C., and New York City and points in between. Make reservations in advance online or by phone.

Ground Transportation

Directions to Duke University


Registration ends on Sept. 14, 2017.