May 17 is a special day for me. On May 17, 1954, the United States Supreme Court unanimously issued the Brown v. Board of Education ruling that declared racial segregation in public education unconstitutional. On May 17, 2019, I have reasons to hope, but also cause to mourn.
An appeal to my white Baptist sisters and brothers: when it comes to talk about the issue of reparations, I hope you will embrace and maintain a penitent silence during the remaining days of Lent.
Tragically, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam isn’t an outlier. He merely offers the latest, high-profile evidence of the deep and bitter truth about white Christianity’s toleration of, and complicity in, the sin of white supremacy.
The fate and futures of our neighbors, the security of our nation and the legitimacy of our claim to be a force for morality in the world has been taken hostage by an autocratic president with a lifelong penchant for immorality and inhumanity.
Imagine what the Holy Spirit might accomplish if Southern Seminary spent the next 150 years intentionally preparing people for ministry careers based on the gospel of liberation and justice rather than the slaveholder theology and hermeneutic and heresies of white supremacy, white religious nationalism and imperialism.
On Tuesday night, I’ll watch election returns to see whether white people who call themselves evangelical followers of Jesus will, again, prove that they prize white supremacy above the inclusive and liberating gospel of divine grace, truth, justice and peace.