Monday, January 15, 2007

Gilbreath: Racial Reconciliation Is Long, Hard, Far from Done

Christian journalist Edward Gilbreath provides a most sobering, challenging and honest evaluation of evangelicals' efforts at racial reconciliation in his recent book on the Christianity Today web site. A precis of his recent book Reconciliation Blues: A Black Evangelical's Inside View of White Christianity, Gilbreath chronicles the frustrating experience of being an African-American trying to work within the structures of white-dominated evangelical organizations.

We urge, as always, reading of the entire piece, with the following provocative questions as a sample:

White Christian, you have people of color on your staff, but are you seeking their ideas and perspectives? Does your corporate culture reflect sensitivity to the feelings and concerns of nonwhite individuals? You've spoken to the black people who attend your church, but have you had them over to watch the game after service? Have you invited them to join your small group? . . .

White Christian, you hugged and apologized to that nameless black person at an out-of-town conference, but have you made any new friends across racial lines since you've returned home? Are you now more attuned to the subtle ways society treats whites differently from blacks?

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