By Mai-Anh Tran
When the #BlackLivesMatter protest movement burst into dynamic action following the shooting death of young Michael Brown in the fall of 2014 in Ferguson, MO, a good number of clergy and lay leaders in greater St. Louis sprang to action and learned anew what it took to "put some feet to their prayers." However, as improvisational efforts continued to rally and organize churches toward the enduring work of confronting the insidious violence of systemic social injustices in their own backyard, these religious leaders ran head-on into a familiar yet perplexing wall: the incapacity and unwillingness of their faith communities to respond. In many cases, the resistance was (and still is) fierce, eerily reminiscent of the stand-offs that divided religious communities and leadership in the 1960s Civil Rights era. If the Church's teaching, learning, and practice of faith is purportedly transformative, then where was/is that faith when it was/is needed most? If good religious formation had been happening--or had it?--then why the enduring signs of indifference, paralysis, apathy, exasperation, resistance, symptoms of anesthetized moral consciousness and debilitated hope in the face of pervasive social-cultural violence?