Isaac Anderson : Minister and Politician

“…white churches with understanding into the long-held perspectives of spiritual leadership that is part of the African American mindset and experience? ”

Team Members/Contributors

Alicia Kaigler Jackson Covenant College Contact Me

About this project grant for researchers

In building an in-depth picture of the black minister as both spiritual and political leader, this case study focuses on Isaac Anderson who, during Reconstruction, was a founding pastor of the Colored Methodist Episcopal Church and at the same time, a senator of the Georgia legislature. His story gives insight into the realities of a black minister who, as a spiritual and a political leader, led congregants and constituents from the repressive black belt of Georgia to black safe havens in Arkansas and Mississippi. The stories of many black leaders in the South are glimpsed through his, which is the story of how African American ministers negotiated the weight of their spiritual calling, the precariousness of their political office, and the abasement of their need to maintain paternalistic relations with white leaders and denominations such as the Methodist Episcopal, South, during a period now known as the nadir of race relations. Their experience captures the emotion of the Biblical author, who from jail said, “I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need.” Philippians 4:12