Many Christians of all races fear their children marrying outside of their own race more than outside of their faith. Let’s get real. Those prejudices are called “SIN”. We can’t heal from something we refuse to acknowledge or discuss. I’m glad that many Pastors like Matt Chandler, Bryan Loritts, Scott Williams and a few others are engaging the issue. They’re not just discussing it but they are hiring with this in mind. They are teaching and leading their congregations towards diversity. Crosspointe Church in Atlanta Metro formed small groups around the subject and together read the book, “Church Diversity” by Scott Williams, a must read for churches who are engaging the issue.“
In communities where gentrification is at its peak, the Black Churches that can afford to, are moving out. Many of the members are commuting, but have no connection to the community. I see churches in 95% Latino communities but the community does not attend the church. The culture they know is disappearing. I believe it’s an opportunity for church plants with diversity in mind. If God placed you in a specific area, and demographics change, could it be an opportunity to think outside the box? If we believe it’s about the Kingdom of God, then we would.
Are we credible to those outside the church as it relates to race?
I ran across this article and honestly, I was not surprised. A college in South Carolina, attempting to move away from its racist past, hired a new President that has a controversial past on racial unity. He is considered a confederate flag lover. Without getting into all the controversy over the Confederate flag, it seems odd a school trying to shed negative racial press and become more diverse would then hire someone that seems to be on the other side of that perspective.
How can we be credible if we don’t embrace this simple truth? “By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:35 What does loving one another look like?
Has diversity become a buzzword that sounds good? Has it become just a great topic to discuss but with no attempt to change? All who speak about racial diversity are not serious about racial diversity. It is impossible to be serious about it without doing the hard work it requires. As Christians we know we should desire diversity in our lives. Unfortunately, most of us find ourselves stuck in our own little bubbles, not knowing how to move forward. We must become credible, as stated by Brenda Salter McNeil in the above video.
That leads us to the next question – How do we engage and grow racial diversity?
Stay tuned for Part Four when I discuss ideas for Austin and unpack racial diversity a little more.