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Otis Moss

Rev. Otis Moss III served as assistant pastor of Chicago’s Trinity United Church of Christ (TUCC) from 2006-2008. When TUCC's longtime pastor Jeremiah Wright retired in February 2008, Moss was named as his successor. His most famous congregant, presidential candidate Barack Obama, has extolled Rev. Moss as a “wonderful young pastor.” On December 4, 2007, Moss was named as a member of the Obama campaign's  African American Religious Leadership Committee. Other notable members of the Committee included Rev. Joseph E. Lowery and Jeremiah Wright.

In one notable sermon, Moss likened the condition of contemporary black Americans to that of the lepers referenced in biblical stories: “You see they [blacks] still are lepers. They still have a skin disease. They had a skin disease…. Based on their skin condition, they were considered to be second-class citizens. They had a skin issue…. And the lepers lived in a leper project. The lepers had bad health care. The lepers were disrespected. They had funny names for lepers. The lepers were considered inferior. They had an inferior school system. The lepers lived in a ghetto leper colony. The lepers were segregated from everybody else.”  Moss further implied that whites -- who, in his estimation, continue to segregate blacks both socially and economically -- are the “enemy” of African Americans. Characterizing the United States as a nation rife with injustice and racism, Moss added: “Our society creates thugs. Children are not born thugs. Thugs are made and not born.”

To view a comprehensive profile and numerous supplemental resources about Otis Moss, click here.

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