With this post, I admit that I may be being a bit too optimistic. Maybe, maybe not. But I must admit that I am pretty excited about what I see on the horizon. It’s like I am watching the onset of a storm. First you notice the clouds changing on the horizon; next you pay attention to the subtle pick up of wind speed. As the clouds gather strength, with certainty you know a storm is coming way before it starts to rain. Similarly with racial reconciliation those who are paying attention to the subtle signs of ministry landscape can sense that possibly a storm of change is coming:
- There have never been as many multiethnic and social justice conferences as there are now. One of the oldest, the Christian Community Development Association Conference (CCDA) is struggling with the great problem of outgrowing their traditional venues used.
- The Justice Conference held annually in Portland, OR has emerged as a major event
- The largest annual gathering of church planters (around 4,000; Exponential Conference) has an entire workshop track dedicated to multiethnic ministry and leadership
- The Mosaix Global Network has formed and held its first multiethnic church conference
- Leaders of significant Christian influence such as Bill Hybels and Rick Warren have made racial reconciliation a significant part of their ministry
- Christian college campuses are beginning to respond to student desires by creating majors and starting centers to address reconciliation
Just this week I have read a blog post by Ed Stetzer challenging the church to become more diverse and contributed to an article for urbanfaith.com about denominations stepping up to the plate. Could it be there is a quiet movement of the Spirit of God that is causing ministry leaders to re-examine how they “do church” and within that examination is an effort to address what WEB DuBois called “the problem of the color line?” We can only hope and pray that during the year of the unveiling of the MLK memorial that indeed we are moving towards becoming the beloved community that he challenged the church to be.