Bishop Explores Intersection Between Race and Religion in New Book

Bishop Donald O. Clay Jr.


The Undercoverage staff purposely set out to speak with people who could speak to some or all of the elements we focused on in our project. One such person was Bishop Donald O. Clay Jr., pastor of Petra Ministries International in Pittsburgh, Penn., who shared his thoughts on race and religion during a brief interview.

Bishop Clay, a native of Cincinnati, has been preaching the gospel since he was 15. He now leads a multicultural congregation and is considered to be one of the more progressive and proactive voices in religion today. He recently authored a book called, What God Says About Race!

UC: How did you come up with the idea for the book?

DC: Inspiration for the book was driven by a passion to provide a purely biblical view of race, amid all the social and political views being expressed.

UC: In what ways are race and religion intertwined?

DC: Religion, I believe in its purest sense, is designed to unveil three things us: Who God is, who we are and our raison d’être…our purpose or reason for being.

UC: As a man who grew up in the 60s and 70s, what are your thoughts on the racial tension in today’s America?

DC: Like many Americans, heartbroken over a growing polarization fueled by differences. Differences that were actually designed to reveal the beauty of our diversity

UC:What are the particular challenges of ministering to Millennials who may be really disillusioned by what’s going on in America today?

DC: I believe the greatest challenge is to define the love of God to a generation who has received such poor examples of love.

UC: How can the different faiths — particularly Islam and Judaism work together to ease racial tension?

DC: We are seeing a phenomenal breakthrough in this area with ministries we have partnered with in Israel. Simply put, just as religion has in many ways been the spearhead of division, this speaks to the truth that religion can also provide the balm for healing. The key is, a desire to be whole rather than right.

Bishop Clay interview, courtesy of Petra Ministries