Kuumba - Creativity - to do always as much as we can, in the way we can, in order to leave our community in a more beautiful and beneficial than we inherited it. 


Overview of Kuumba


Kuumba calls on us to use our creative energy to advance our collective purpose. It is a call for us to reflect the creative and restorative ability of God.


Kuumba acknowledges chaos is ever present, often destroying what has been built. Decay also threatens the accomplishments of the past. Therefore, we are responsible to do more than care take what we have been given, we are called to make it more beautiful and more beneficial.


Sometimes this is through the use of art of various mediums, remembering Toni Cade Bambara’s wisdom that “the role of the artist is to make revolution irresistible.” However, Kuumba is not just limited to the creativity that is expressed in art. It is also the creativity that we use to survive, to liberate ourselves, and to build on our legacy.  


Biblical Examples of Kuumba


The Bible opens up with Kuumba.  The creation account that begins in Genesis 1 is about God creating order out of the midst of chaos. Turning what was inhabitable into something habitable and life-giving. 


The movement for liberation in Exodus involves Kuumba on multiple levels: 

  • The actions taken to change Pharoah’s mind 
  • The deliverance at the Red Sea
  • The establishment of a new way of living



Kuumba and Christian Practice


Christianity invites us to be good stewards of what we have been given, this is part of the underpinning of Kuumba. 



Practicing Kuumba at Home


Uplift art that creates positive images of our past, present in future in your home. Whether it is paintings, photographs, poetry, music, literature, or other works of art, having them in the home is an opportunity to allow their inspiration to be a part of your home life. 


Practicing Kuumba in the Community


Host opportunities for children and young people to imagine how they would improve their communities. Invite them to write, draw, or make other art that expresses their ideas. 



Reflection Prompts, Discussion Questions, and Activities for Kuumba


Make a journey map of your family’s movement and progress from generation to generation. What are the moments in that history where creativity showed up to push back the forces of chaos? 


Celebrating art as tools of inspiration, resistance, and social justice: 

Who are your favorite artists? What do their works of art invoke in you? 

Nelson Pierce


(Beloved Community Church) (Democracy for America) Tweets are my own, not reflective of anyone for whom I work. He/him