DeForest Soaries—After MLK—The New Challenge for Black Pastors

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Whereas [Martin Luther] King's goals were primarily about changing laws and influencing wider public opinion, these current goals are primarily about individual responsibility.

Unfortunately, that distinction seems to have been missed by the recently revived Conference of National Black Churches. Relaunched last month after a few dormant years, the CNBC comprises nine of the largest black denominations, made up of as many as 30 million individuals and more than 50,000 congregations. Led by the Rev. W. Franklyn Richardson, the conference says that it speaks with a "unified voice" on health, education, public policy, social justice and economic empowerment.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the LaityMinistry of the Ordained* Culture-WatchChildrenHistoryLaw & Legal IssuesMarriage & FamilyRace/Race RelationsReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

Posted January 28, 2011 at 12:24 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. Sick & Tired of Nuance wrote:

Hello…Black Pastors…Earth to Black Pastors…the out of wedlock birth rates in the US for the black community is 72%! 

If you want to improve your children’s education, reduce the number of blacks in poverty, reduce the number of blacks in prison, and reduce the number of blacks on drugs, might I humbly suggest that you begin your efforts focused on this pressing problem.  It is a statistical certainty that children from single parent homes face significant challenges in education, poverty, drug use, and involvment in criminal activity.  Since the black community has a crisis level out of wedlock birth rate of 72%, you could make your greatest impact by doing so, I think.

January 28, 2:54 pm | [comment link]
2. drummie wrote:

It seems to me that the author is addressing some of the issues that affect out of wedlock births.  Having a stable two parent (of different sex) home improves the possibilities that the children will have a chance to break the cycle that has lasted so long in the black community.  One of the reasons for such a high, out of wedlock, birthrate seems to be fathers that are still little children in men’s bodies.  Many do not have anything to do with the mother or the child, much less pay child support.  Finding homes for black children in either foster or adoptive families is a good starting point.  Another thing that just might help is having mentors from within the church communites to help teach the many young men from broken homes.  All the money in the world could be thrown into the mix and would do nothing without people.  It has to begin with people that care.  Church seems like a good place to start.  The church that my wife attends (Southern Baptist) has decided to try and help.  They spent several million dollars to build what they call a “Life Center”.  It has class rooms, a gym, arcade room, weight room as well as a full restaurant.  This is open to ANYONE to use, except for Wednsday night and Sunday night.  The other nights there will be anywhere from 40 to 75 young men playing basketball. Some nights there is a group of 35-50 teenage girls that are attending a cheerleader school.  Some nights half the gym is set up for volleyball. Other times, new churches just starting use the class rooms for Bible studies and services.
Sometime during the time that any of these groups are there, which is sometimes 4 hours, there is a chance to interact with them and demonstrate the Gospels to them.  The only problem is finding enough volunteers to keep it open at the full scfhedule.  No one from any other church (except for myself) has helped.  Why?  The Church that built it has invested a huge sum from their budget to build this great facility.  Why isn’t it easier to man?  Probably because many don’t care.  It won’t answer the problems by itself but it is a start. 
One night while I was pulling my shift, a young black man was wearing a Rosary while playing basketball.  When he was sitting out of action for a break, I approached him and asked if he knew what the Rosary was.  He had no idea. We talked then and a few nights later in the month.  I shared some of my background as well as experiences in finding Christ.  This young man is now attending a church downtown. I am told by the pastor that he usually brings someone with him. Maybe if we get off our backsides and on our knees we can see how to be a part of a solution rather than uncaring spectators. I would challenge all the readers at this blog make it a point to find out where they can help and give of themselves, and their money if they can. I can not afford to give money, but I can certainly give of my time.  Try it, you will like yourself more.Good role models are needed more than money most of the time.  It doesn’t matter which church you attend, somewhere there is a place where you can get involved.

January 28, 5:24 pm | [comment link]
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