[A] religion true to its nature must also be concerned about man’s social conditions…. Any religion that professes to be concerned with the souls of men and is not concerned with the slums that damn them, the economic conditions that strangle them, and the social conditions that cripple them is a dry-as-dust religion. (King 1958, 23)
In 1958, MLK published Stride Toward Freedom, which detailed the Montgomery phase of the Civil Rights Movement, including the famed bus boycott. I have always found this quote to be so reflective of the nature of the black church, as defined by C. Eric Lincoln and Lawrence H. Mamiya in their 1990 tome, The Black Church in the African American Experience. I think that’s one of the reasons I use this quote in much of my research.