Tuesday, June 19, 2007

White Church

Why are Christian churches running from the ghetto? Run towards it!

20 comments:

mark said...

Are you refering to any specific churches?

Derek said...

So, given your logic, can we expect that your next blog post will encourage a bunch of AME churches to run toward rich, white neighborhoods? After all, the suburban sprawl folks need Christ just as much as "the ghetto."

Aaroncoal said...

The last thing that the surburban sprawl folks need is another mega church amoung the masses. We don't exactly need a white, wealthy church every 50 feet.

Derek said...

I think you missed my point. If the "white churches" are supposed to run toward "the ghetto" shouldn't the "black churches" be required to run toward "the penthouse"?

We don't exactly need a white, wealthy church every 50 feet.

Unless those churches are located in the ghetto, correct?

Derek said...

Just trying to follow your logic here, that's all.

Derek said...

One other thought...

The 2000 census numbers for Wichita show that 9.6% of the population is Hispanic. But no one ever criticizes Christian churches for not "running to the barrio."

Aaroncoal said...

I think maybe the confusion lies with our intrepretation of the word ghetto. Maybe that's not the right word. I just think churches should stop trying to cash in on prime real estate and instead move to a location where maybe 99% of the surrounding neighbors aren't caucasion.
Do something different! The church I go to now certainly isn't urbanly located but a cool thing about that church is when I go there each week I don't know whether I will be sitting next to a white, black, hispanic, or an asian. And they managed to do this all without distorting any truth.

I'm not pointing this beef with any church in particular. Just WASPs in general.

Sure..if an AME church wants to move out to the east or west edge of town...then go for it.
I'm speaking of white America for now.

Derek said...

Your last comment leaves me even more confused. Your original post exhorted churches to stop "running from the ghetto" and suggested that they "run towards it." What do you mean by this? Should they move their church buildings into "the ghetto" or should they (regardless of where the building is physically located) adopt practices that would attract more minorities?

I just think churches should stop trying to cash in on prime real estate and instead move to a location where maybe 99% of the surrounding neighbors aren't caucasion.

You are imputing motives here but, of course, you can always back out by saying "I'm not saying this about any church in particular."

The church I go to now certainly isn't urbanly located but a cool thing about that church is when I go there each week I don't know whether I will be sitting next to a white, black, hispanic, or an asian. And they managed to do this all without distorting any truth.

That is wonderful, Aaron. Care to drop the name of the church here in case anyone is looking for a similar congregation to join?

I'm not pointing this beef with any church in particular. Just WASPs in general.

I'll be honest here, Aaron. The fact that you are making these statements right after your former church (a predominately Caucasian congregation) announces that they are preparing to move from an urban location to a suburban location seems fishy.

Couldn't your comments be construed as being directed toward your former church?

Aaroncoal said...

Nope. Not talking about any one church. Sometimes current events point us to a bigger picture. I'm not going to reveal my current church because I'm not advertising it..Just saying I like it...But if you feel the need to 'out' where I'm going then be my guest. Feel free to tell them what I'll be wearing next Sunday morning if you want.

Derek said...

I'm not going to reveal my current church because I'm not advertising it...

Oh well, to each his own.

But if you feel the need to 'out' where I'm going then be my guest.

I have no earthly idea where you attend church, Aaron. To be perfectly honest, I wasn't even sure you were attending church at all.

My question from earlier was genuine. If your church is as good as you say it is at attracting people from diverse backgrounds I thought readers of your blog might like to know how they could find it.

Aaroncoal said...

Well I'm not going to reveal where I attend. The grapevine can tell you where I go.
Very few people read this blog.
My point can best be summed up in what I said earlier... We don't exactly need a white, wealthy church every 50 feet.

Derek said...

My point can best be summed up in what I said earlier... We don't exactly need a white, wealthy church every 50 feet.

My point can best be summed up this way: white, wealthy folks have need of Christ and a church just as much as anyone else. To characterize a church as nothing more than "white and rich" is to engage in the same type of debate tactics that liberals use to bash conservatives.

karla said...

This is what I think...

"Churches", just like any other "corporation" need funding.

There is a reason it is, "the ghetto". The people in these areas hardly have money enough to survive themselves.... Regardless of what any one man believes, a "church" can not survive on faith alone. It's a STRUCTURE that costs money to build, maintain & operate.

Every one of these newly built "rich white churches" has a "building fund" that they are asking THEIR members to contribute to every month. Most months these "rich white churches" fail to meet that goal. How is a church built in "the ghetto" expected to survive?

Maybe the "rich white churches" could provide a busing service to transport the ghettoites to a different church?

Aaroncoal said...

Karla,

Why do we have to bus the minorities out of their sphere of influence. Why don't the rich white people drive their fancy cars into the ghetto and still give money. Think of how much better that money could be used other than through "building funds" for country club churches.

Aaroncoal said...

The problem is that the church, instead of spreading the gospel to rich white folks, has become an enabler.

Aaroncoal said...

The problem is not rich people. The problem lies in the way rich Christians are getting harder and harder to distinguish from the rest of the world.
God knows I am not a liberal and He knows that I am 100% capitalist. I admire rich people. However I do not think they are above the ghetto in need of a savior, and they are the ones have the means to reach out their hand...but not the will.

karla said...

Aaron,

Maybe the people in the ghetto want to be "bussed out of their sphere of influence"? You assuming they don't is just as bad as me assuming they do!

A church will be built regardless, right? You are saying that you think these churches should be BUILT in the ghetto. BUILT in the ghetto instead of in the rich white country clubbing communities. BUILDING a church is what makes the "building fund" come alive. Your argument is simply about WHERE they should be built.

Either way the money would be spent on BUILDING the church and MAINTAINING the church and OPERATING the church.

It's unrealistic to believe that ANYONE rich or not would drive anywhere other than what is convenient for them to go to a church! You say you like your church, but how many different churches have you really been to? Pretty dang convenient for you that your church is located so close to home. Hmm?

NEW SOLUTION:
Build the church on a LAKE right on the middle grounds of rich and ghetto. Make people raft in.

Aaroncoal said...

Karla,
I'm not sure I understand the whole building fund thing..can you explain that a little more?

In the 70's, 80's, and 90's blacks WERE bussed to church. It was a ministry. It was a good ministry. However when the black community started growing around into white church neighborhoods...they started moving.
And they weren't always moving because they were growing..they were running from something.

karla said...

I think the communities themselves need to be shaped up before any church can survive.

Maybe these rich people do have THE WILL. Maybe they HAVE lent their support to a church in need? Did they see it vandalized and run into the ground because of the surrounding conditions, and that's why they are no longer supportive?

Do you think that it makes any sense to rebuild and rebuild and rebuild those homes in California that continuosly slide down mountains? Hey buddy, give this new mountain-side estate a shot.. maybe it will work out?

Do you persuade your 16 year old daughter to date a 40 year old repeat sex offender that has "reformed"? Give the man a chance... maybe he really is "the one" for your daughter.

Why would it make sense to build a church in an area that screams failure? An area that has already had a church there that has not succeeded?

You can't force something to survive. Surroundings have a pretty big impact on the survival rate of everything.

Just maybe your vision is a bit blurred on the big scheme of things?

Aaroncoal said...

I'm closing the comments for this blog posts. If you have further comments please post them on the above post about the multi-cultural church. And please hold your comments until after you've listened to the entire sermon that is posted.