The Rev. Dr. Jacqui Lewis is Senior Minister at Middle Collegiate Church in New York City, where she leads its 1,000-member congregation. Middle Church’s diversity may look like the subway, but its legendary love feels like home. Jews, Buddhists, Atheists, and Christians pack the sanctuary to standing-room-only capacity. Millennials and boomers, trans and gay, singles and families all call Middle their own. On Sunday mornings, gospel, R & B, and classical music narrate God’s creativity. Congregants stop wearing mascara because worship is often a mixture of the joy and truth found in therapy or a Broadway show. Middle Church is a fierce voice for racial, LGBT, and economic equality.
Rev. Lewis has taught countless congregations throughout the United States and in South Africa how to build multiracial and multicultural congregations. Believing faith communities can lead the way to racial reconciliation, she co-founded a national conference, “Revolutionary Love,” to teach activists and faith leaders how to advocate for racial justice in their communities and build multicultural constituencies.
Jacqui Lewis earned her Master of Divinity from Princeton University and her Ph.D. in Psychology and Religion from Drew University. She is the first woman and the first African-American to be called as a senior minister in the historic Collegiate Churches of New York, founded in 1628. Dr. Lewis has hosted “Just Faith,” an on-demand television program on MSNBC.com, and she is a frequent media commentator. She recently completed the six-city Together Tour with best-selling author Glennon Doyle Melton, Seane Corn, Valarie Kaur, Jennifer Randolph, and special guest Alicia Keys.