| Reverend Bell's Message Rings True
During the September 25 convocation, Dr. Michael Bell presented an inspiring message of diversity.
The Black Music Ensemble began the convocation with a gospel song titled “We Are Family,” creating the atmosphere of togetherness for Rev. Bell’s discourse. Dr. Bell began by reading from Acts 10:34, a passage in which Peter says God does not show partiality. Bell concluded, “God has a deep passion for diversity”
Doctor Bell used metaphors to describe the history of America’s diversity. First, America was a Melting Pot—all racial distinction was gone. Every race and culture was mixed together to form one culture. Then, America became a Salad Bowl, meaning it was acceptable for all races and cultures to be unique; but together in one place. Like the vegetables of a salad.
Reverend Bell made clear the fact racism is just as much prevalent today as it was two thousand years ago. Just two weeks ago, a fellow minister of Dallas, Texas told Reverend Bell of the racism among the youth attending the church. Reverend also stated, “A USA Today survey said blacks and Hispanics are more likely to see racism as a problem and describe it as part of their life.” Bell also brought forth an example of prejudice in the Bible. It was scandalous for Jews and Gentiles of Biblical times to associate with each other. God told Peter through a vision not to call anything impure that God has made clean.
“We may be different, but God has made of one blood all nations of the earth, to live and dwell together,” Dr. Bell said over applause and rising members of the audience. Reverend Bell gave a recipe for success: we can support diversity by intentionally speaking to those who are different; committing to cultural pluralism to the extent no one can dissuade; and modeling willingness to suspend judgment.
Bell encouraged the audience to do something about the lack of love for those who are different from the familiar. “Not theorize about it, not go to another seminar about it; but actually do something about it! When there is no vision, the people perish”
Reverend Doctor Michael Bell left students with an assignment: to love others and to avoid being critical by suspending judgment.