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Truth and Justice: The BlackQuaker Project Challenges Quakerism in the 21st Century

Feb. 5, 2024

A First Monday Lecture with Dr. Harold D. (Hal) Weaver, Jr. and Nozizwe Madlala-Routledge
7:30pm - 9pm Eastern Time (US & Canada) via Zoom.

Free to the public! Registration required.

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610-566-4507, ext. 137

If Quakers were so active in the Abolitionist movement, then why are there so few African American Friends today?”

This haunting query, initially posed by a concerned Black Cuban Quaker visiting Wellesley Friends Meeting some years ago, will serve as a springboard for a presentation challenging Friends to greater commitment to Truth and Justice through new, innovative narratives and models.

Truth and Justice: The BlackQuaker Project Challenges Quakerism in the 21st Century

In this 2024 Black History Month First Monday Lecture, Dr. Harold D. Weaver Jr. (Hal), Founding Director of the BlackQuaker Project (BQP), and Nozizwe Madlala-Routledge, QUNO Geneva Director, seek to answer this puzzling question and others pertaining to the Religious Society of Friends in relation to Friends of Color worldwide in the 21st century. With Madlala-Routledge, Hal will utilize some of his ministry’s major activities to suggest a path forward for the Religious Society of Friends: putting the Quaker testimony of Justice at the forefront of modern Quakerism, healing historical injustices through a new model for Quakers, and responding to a new understanding of systemic violence through anti-violence, not merely non-violence. This lecture will draw on and expand the pronouncements of Friends and non-Friends of various ethnic backgrounds throughout history: African, Asian, European, Latinx, Middle Eastern; the pioneering work of Christian Palestinian scholar-activists Edward Said and Quaker Jean Zaru; video interviews from the Quakers of Color International Archive; and Hal’s personal experiences and observations worldwide.

Thanks to the generous support of the Friends Foundation for the Aging, we’re able to make this and other free, online programs accessible to f/Friends of all ages.


Dr. Harold D. (Hal) Weaver, Jr. is the Founder and Director of the BlackQuaker Project (BQP), a ministry  celebrating the lives and contributions of Quakers of Color worldwide and documenting and addressing their concerns. It is an outreach and in-reach ministry of his Wellesley Friends Meeting. Hal has spent his life confronting the cancer of white supremacy throughout the world, drawing upon the Quaker testimonies of Truth, Peace, Equality, Community, and Justice. Through the BQP, Hal has produced several publications relevant to Quakers: the Beacon Hill Friends House pamphlet of Hal’s 2008 Weed Lecture, “Facing Unbearable Truths;” Black Fire: African American Quakers on Spirituality and Human Rights (2011) through FGC Press; the 2020 Pendle Hill pamphlet Race, Systemic Violence, and Retrospective Justice: An African American Quaker Scholar-Activist Challenges Conventional Narratives (PHP #465); and the January 2021 Friends Journal article, “A Proposed Plan for Retrospective Justice.”

Hal’s Quaker governance roles have  included serving with the Quaker United Nations Office, American Friends Service Committee, Pendle Hill, Friends General Conference, Friends World Committee for Consultation, and the Haverford College Corporation. The founding Chairperson of the Department of Africana Studies at Rutgers University during the early days of the Black Studies movement, Hal is currently an Associate at Harvard University’s Hutchins Center for African and African American Research and was honored in 2022 with the Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award from Haverford College. Hal lives in Newton, Massachusetts, and Oaxaca, Mexico, with his life partner, Anne Steere Nash, and attends Wellesley Friends Meeting and the Oaxaca Quaker Worship Group that he co-founded more than a decade ago.

Nozizwe Madlala-Routledge is a Quaker. She joined QUNO Geneva as Director in November 2021. She taught a 2020 Spring Semester Course on South Africa’s Peaceful Transition at Haverford College, to a diverse group of students from the Tri-Colleges (Haverford, Bryn Mawr and Swarthmore Colleges). She was one of few women at the negotiations for South Africa’s transition from apartheid. From 1999 to 2004 she served as a Deputy Minister of Defence and Deputy Minister of Health from 2004 – 2007. In the Ministry of Defence and later the Department of Health. She is a recipient of the Tanenbaum Peacemakers Award and an honorary doctorate from Haverford College, Pennsylvania. She has a Bachelor of Social Science honours degree from the University of Cape Town.

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