CBF Podcast: A Conversation with Lisa Sharon Harper


By Andy Hale 

For fun, my parents participated in two genealogy tests. The results, for the most part, were not that all surprising. We are about as Western European as Western Europeans get.

What surprised us was the amount of Scandinavian and French Canadian on my mother’s side. But then again, I’ve always loved poutine and Gravlax.

The unveiled mystery of this portion of our ancestry is part and parcel to the fact that my mother was adopted. We have no firsthand knowledge as to who my biological grandfather was.

It has become a running joke in the family to blame all the unlikable traits to that guy.

“The best way for us to talk about who we are is by talking about those who came before us,” said Lisa Sharon Harper, president of Freedom Road. “We stand on the shoulders of our ancestors, and they are literally in us. To understand who I am, you have to understand who they are.”

Lisa’s work is in the writing and telling the story of her ancestors, as well as helping others understand and tell the story of those who have gone before them.

Lisa is the author of multiple books, including The Very Good Gospel and Evangelical Does Not Equal Republican or Democrat. She formerly served as the former chief church engagement officer of Sojourners.

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CBF’s podcast shares stories from across the Fellowship and innovative practices of those working to renew God’s world. The vision is to share ideas, stories, and innovations from ministers, authors, and practitioners.

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This podcast episode is brought to you by Fuller Seminary, The Center for Congregational Health, CBF Advocacy in Action, and Living Earth Ceramics.

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Andy Hale created and hosts the podcast of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship. Hale is the senior pastor of University Baptist Church of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, following eight years as the founding pastor of Mosaic Church of Clayton and five years as CBF’s church start specialist. Follow on Twitter @haleandy

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