Document Type

Contribution to Book



Publication Date



Oxford University Press

Source Publication

The Oxford Handbook of Theology, Sexuality, and Gender

Source ISSN



This essay examines conflicts concerning sex, sexuality, and gender within Black churches. Black churches are American Protestant churches with a predominantly Black leadership and congregation. Often serving the oppressed and underprivileged, Black churches have a history not only of providing for the spiritual needs of Black Americans, but also of fighting for social justice. Increasingly, controversies have begun to emerge within these churches, about gender equality, HIV/AIDS and safer sex education, and, perhaps the most controversial, about homosexuality and same-sex marriage. This essay discusses how Black churches have responded to these issues and the impact that HIV/AIDS has had on this response. Additionally, examples of the role of women and sexual minorities in Black church denominations and congregations will be provided.


Published version. "Conflicts Within the Black Churches" in The Oxford Handbook of Theology, Sexuality, and Gender. Ed. Adrian Thatcher. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014. DOI. © 2014 Oxford University Press. Used with permission.