Meyer Chambers opened up this year’s Summer Reading Assembly in St. Bartholomew Church on September 20, 2021 in song, before giving a brief story of how he once met Sister Thea Bowman, the protagonist of this year’s All School Read, Thea's Song: The Life of Thea Bowman, by Charlene Smith and John Feister. After his account, he introduced the assembly’s keynote speaker, Dr. Shawn Copeland.
Copeland, a Black Catholic theologian and professor emerita of systematic theology at Boston College addressed St. Sebastian’s students and faculty on the book. She talked about who Bowman was and how she had a love for culture, her people, and all people. She was immersed in her African-American culture. She learned it, questioned it and challenged it and shared it with others and was committed to help people of different cultures to come together.
Copeland left the audience with something Bowman had said to a graduating class— “Your education gives you a power nobody can take away from you. Use your power to make a better world.”