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Introducing Onleilove Alston New Ecumenical Women Blogger

“I do the work of justice not out of a disdain for the privileged but out of a love for Life.”

– Womanist Theologian Dr. Kelly Douglas Brown


My name is Onleilove (pronounced Onlylove), I am a daughter, sister, friend and fourth year in the MDiv/MSW program at Union Theological seminary and Columbia University School of Social Work in New York City.

As a Poverty Scholar I work on a variety of projects geared toward reigniting Dr. King’s Poor People’s Campaign, such as creating a Bible Studies/Devotional series on The Last Week of Jesus/Last Year of King. Most recently I spent a week in West Virginia with poor activist from across the world serving as a Chaplain and Religious Track workshop leader for The Leadership School. This school included 200 participants from organizations such as the Shackdwellers Movement of South Africa, The Church of Scotland and The Michigan Welfare Rights Union. I have the pleasure of serving on the New York Faith & Justice leadership team and in 2008 I served as the Publicity Chair for EnVision: The Gospel, Politics and the Future at Princeton University. Currently I serve on the planning team for Plymouth Center for Progressive Christianity’s 2009 Emerging Leaders Conference. As a Beatitudes Society Fellow I interned in Washington, DC at Sojourners in the Policy and Organizing Department. With an interest in progressive faith and politics I am a graduate of the 2009 Women’s Campaign School at Yale Law School (which included women from Sudan, South Africa, Russia and Afghanistan) and a Faithful Democrats Fellow. I have been awarded The Children Defense Fund’s Joshua and Deborah Track Scholarship and was a 2008 seminarian participant in The Christian Churches Together Conference. A contributing writer for Sojourners Magazine, my work has been published in: The Black Commentator, Wrecked for the Ordinary, God’s Politics, Faithful Democrats and on my personal blog-Esther’s Call.


A native of East New York, Brooklyn I will return to create a faith-based community organizing and development non-profit. I believe that the Gospel is truly “good news to the poor” and will humbly work to proclaim this message in my community.

On a more personal note I have 5 siblings and come from a HUGE family. My grandparents migrated from the south to Brooklyn but we still keep to our southern roots. All of my work springs from my powerful conversion experience at age 14 in a National Baptist Convention Church. I currently attend Metro Hope Church in East Harlem, an Evangelical Covenant congregation dedicated to living out the gospel via community and service. I consider myself a radical Evangelical in the Black Baptist Tradition informed by Black Theology and Empire Critical New Testament Studies.


My favorite colors are purple and turquoise, I LOVE all forms of Art-especially music, theater and Museums (The MET in NYC is my 2nd home). A dedicated Penn State Football and Yankee baseball fan I am VERY excited about the fall. I am a  proud member of Alpha Nu Omega, Inc. a historically Black Christian Sisterhood.

I am very excited to be joining Ecumenical Women as a blogger and look forwarded to hearing from all of you! Feel free to leave your questions, comments or concerns. Be Blessed!

My favorite links:

My personal blog Esther’s Call:

NY Faith & Justice:

Alpha Nu Omega, Inc:

The Poverty Initiative:

The Beatitudes Society:

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