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The Rev. Dr. Kenyatta Gilbert The Rev. Dr. Kenyatta Gilbert is associate professor of homiletics at Howard University School of Divinity in Washington, DC.

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Howard University School of Divinity, Washington, DC

The Rev. Dr. Kenyatta Gilbert


Howard University School of Divinity, Washington, DC


The Reverend Dr. Kenyatta R. Gilbert is Associate Professor of Homiletics at the Howard University School of Divinity.  He earned his B.A. in Political Science from Baylor University and both his M.Div. and Ph.D. in Practical Theology from Princeton Theological Seminary.

Dr. Gilbert specializes in the history, theory, and practice of African American preaching.  His research focuses on the theology and rhetoric of prophetic preaching, African American religion, hermeneutical theory, and constructive practical theology. He is author of The Journey and Promise of African American Preaching (Fortress Press 2011). A Pursued Justice:  Black Preaching from the Great Migration to Civil Rights (Baylor University Press 2016).

His forthcoming book is Exodus Preaching:  Crafting Sermons on Justice and Hope (Abingdon Press 2017).  Dr. Gilbert's articles "What Shaped Martin Luther King Jr.'s Prophetic Vision?" (New Republic) and "Hidden Figures:  How Black Women Spoke Truth to Power" (AP) have enjoyed wide-circulation.

Dr. Gilbert is the 2009-2010 recipient of Louisville Institute's First Book Grant for Minority Scholars, Howard University's 2011 Emerging Scholar Award, and Andrew Mellon Fellowship (inaugural class) at Moorland-Spingarn Research Center, Washington, DC, summer 2013.   He has served as faculty collaborator for HUSD's Equipping the Saints: Promising Practices in Black Congregational Life, a national study funded by the Lilly Endowment, Inc.  

Dr. Gilbert is an ordained Baptist minister and founder of The Preaching Project: Restoring Communities through Spoken Word (, a website ministry promoting the nurture of the preaching life of ministers serving African American churches and communities.  Prior to joining the Divinity School's faculty in 2006, he served congregations in Texas, New York, New Jersey, and Kenya. 

Dr. Gilbert is married to Dr. Allison Blow Gilbert, a pediatrician.  The Gilberts have three daughters: Olivia Copeland, Ella Jane, and Ava Sage.


Latest Content by The Rev. Dr. Kenyatta Gilbert

The Rev. Dr. Kenyatta Gilbert

Kenyatta Gilbert: Pinocchio Prophecy

Jeremiah 28:5-9

4th Sunday after Pentecost - Year A

July 02, 2017

The Rev. Dr. Kenyatta Gilbert (other)

The story of Pinocchio is a fictional, allegorical tale about what it takes to become a real boy. In fulfilling the wish of his woodcarving father Gepetto, Pinocchio, the wooden marionette protagonist, is brought to life by a blue fairy, who appears waving her wand over the wooden puppet. She says, "Wake, Pinocchio! Skip and run! For your owner needs you!" Pinocchio blinks his eyes and raises his wooden arms, and says, "I can move! I'm a real boy!" But to this assertion the Blue Fairy soberly replies, "No. You have life, but to become a real boy and be of use to your maker, you must prove yourself brave, truthful, and unselfish."

Read full transcript...