UMO to Host Vivian B. Harrison Memorial Lecture

UMO to Host Vivian B. Harrison Memorial Lecture

MOUNT OLIVE- The University of Mount Olive (UMO) will host the Vivian B. Harrison Memorial Lecture on February 19-20 in Rodgers Chapel.  Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove will lecture on “Being Christian in America.”

The first lecture, “The Peculiar Challenge of Being Christian in America,” will be held on Tuesday, February 19 at 7 PM.  The 9 AM Wednesday, February 20 lecture is titled “Is America Possible? Questions from the Frontlines of a Third Reconstruction.” The 11 AM lecture is titled, “So That We Might Be Reconciled.”

Wilson-Hartgrove is a celebrated spiritual writer and sought-after speaker. He is a native of North Carolina and a graduate of Eastern University and Duke Divinity School.

In 2003, Wilson-Hartgrove and his wife, Leah, founded the Rutba House, a house of hospitality where the formerly homeless are welcomed into community with the formerly housed to eat, pray, and share life together. He directs the School for Conversion, a nonprofit that has grown out of the life of Rutba House to pursue beloved community with kids in their neighborhood and in community-based education around the country. Wilson-Hartgrove is also an associate minister at the historically black St. Johns Missionary Baptist Church.

Wilson-Hartgrove is a co-compiler of the celebrated Common Prayer: A Liturgy for Ordinary Radicals and is the author of several books on Christian spirituality, including Reconstructing the Gospel, Strangers at My Door, The Awakening of Hope, The Wisdom of Stability, and The New Monasticism. He is also co-author with Reverend Dr. William Barber II of The Third Reconstruction: Moral Mondays, Fusion Politics, and the Rise of a New Justice Movement.

An evangelical Christian who connects with the broad spiritual tradition and its monastic witnesses, Wilson-Hartgrove is a leader in the New Monasticism movement. He speaks often about emerging Christianity to churches and conferences across the denominational spectrum and has given lectures at dozens of universities and seminaries, including Calvin College, Bethel University, Duke University, Swarthmore College, St. John’s University, DePaul University, and Baylor University.

For more information, please contact Dr. Robert Neal Cox at

The University of Mount Olive is a private institution rooted in the liberal arts tradition with defining Christian values. The University, sponsored by the Convention of Original Free Will Baptists, has locations in Mount Olive, New Bern, Wilmington, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, Research Triangle Park, Washington, Jacksonville, in Smithfield at Johnston Community College, and online.  For more information, visit