Office of the President
Dear CSP Community:
Today, May 25, marks one year since George Floyd was killed in south Minneapolis. As we reflect on his tragic death and the waves of protest and civil unrest that rippled across the country and world, we continue to pray for his family and friends—and our community as a whole. Our Heavenly Father hears and answers those prayers. He is “near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit” (Psalm 34:18).
As a community, I invite you to join with Minnesotans who will observe a moment of silence at 1:00 this afternoon in remembrance of George Floyd and to recognize the ongoing need for justice and healing.
We know many people in our country, community, and at our University feel deep pain due to injustice and racism. Sin has brought conflict, hatred, and prejudice into our world. Yet we know there is One who brings forgiveness, life, reconciliation, salvation, and unity: Jesus Christ.
Informed by this Good News, CSP is committed to fostering meaningful learning experiences and conversations about diversity, injustice, race, and racism. Our student body represents a wide variety of cultures, ethnicities, languages, and backgrounds. We believe these differences are “assets to what the university is, and that diversity provides immeasurable benefits to us as individuals and as a collective academic community” (CSP Diversity Plan, 2019).
Throughout the ensuing months since May 25, 2020, the CSP community has engaged in meaningful, productive, and empowering conversations about race and racism. All of you have made us a model for the way people can address challenging issues with honesty, respect, and clarity. We’ve expanded the role and presence of the Dr. Cheryl Troutman Chatman Diversity Center. CSP brought in Aqueelah Roberson, as the new Director of the Diversity Center, and we are welcoming Mychal Thom as our first Chief Diversity Officer and Associate Dean of Academic Innovation.
In this season of Pentecost, we praise God that He loves the whole world. We pray that as His Spirit moves in His people, we would see diversity as His good gift and seek justice, reconciliation, and unity that He alone can provide. May we seek the flourishing of all people, listen to the cries of those in distress, and respond to hatred and violence with love and compassion.
Rev. Dr. Brian L. Friedrich