“The American church avoids lament. The power of lament is minimized and the underlying narrative of suffering that requires lament is lost. But absence doesn’t make the heart grow fonder. Absence makes the heart forget. The absence of lament in the liturgy of the American church results in a loss of memory. We forget the necessity of lamenting over suffering and pain. We forget the reality of suffering and pain.”

- Soong-Chan Rah, Prophetic Lament p22

American Christians have long avoided lament and it’s emotional corollary, sadness, in favor of triumphalism and narratives of success. …

Have you ever wondered about the origins of White identity? Have you ever asked yourself who came up with it and why?

Like much of history, the story of white identity has layers, but we can understand it if we try. The real trouble isn’t actually how complicated the history is, it’s how unnerving it gets. And for Christians, the story of Whiteness gets really disturbing.

When it comes to the creation of White identity and race, we have to start with Zurara, a Portuguese scribe from the 1400s. His description of certain slaves as “white enough” in a slave…

Critical Race Theory is getting a lot of attention these days, but given how few people have actually read the work of Critical Race Theorists, it’s fair to argue that CRT is not the real issue. There is a deeper concern with racial justice that White Evangelicals have, and while those deeper concerns may involve a number of things, I believe that the most significant of them is racialization.

Racialization is the concern that race is being ‘made’ or ‘constructed’ or ‘imagined’ when it should not be. This concern may be expressed as statements like “We shouldn’t see color” or…

One of the reasons that talking about race is so challenging today is there is more than one way to talk about White identity. There are at least 5 different ways that people understand White identity today, and maybe more.

Depending on who you ask, Whiteness may mean:

1. ‘White’ or light skin
2. Ancestry from Europe
3. A social and historical construct
4. A social marker of culture
5. A spiritual or political marker of ideology

These different options make it easy to talk past one another, and addressing division without clarity about who we are is a recipe…

Is it okay for White people to criticize Black people, if the criticisms originally came from a Black person?

Candace Owens, John McWhorter, and other African American conservatives have become widely popular for their criticisms of the Black Lives Matter movement and what they would consider to be the unnecessary racialization of police killings of unarmed Black men. Their criticisms typically hinge on the issue of responsibility within the African American community: are Black people shirking responsibility by blaming police and White people? Are Black people failing to own their own problems of laziness and cultural aggression?

It’s common for…

Once upon a time, there was a man named Europe and a woman named Africa.

Europe was a beastly man with youthful strength, a conniving mind and a lust for power. He stole the woman Africa from her home, took her to his New World (which wasn’t actually new and certainly wasn’t his) and abused her in every way.

As beastly as Europe was, he believed himself to be civilized and called himself ‘Christian.’ This felt and sounded a little strange, so Europe called himself White, and called Africa Black: being ‘white’ felt more pure and righteous, and it now…

Many people think race and ethnicity are one and the same, but when we look at them closely, we find that they are in fact radically different ideas. There are three primary ways that race and ethnicity are different: embodiment, segregation and hierarchy.

1. Race is Disembodied; Ethnicity is Embodied

Embodiment is a fancy way of saying that your body matters. Your skin matters, your gender matters, where you live matters, who your parents are matters. …

The Bible really does speak to the issue of white privilege! This might sound strange, given that white identity was not created until 1500 years after the writing of the New Testament, but it’s true. Throughout the NT, God speaks to the spiritually privileged Jews (particularly in Galatians) and he speaks to the socially privileged Gentiles (particularly in Romans).

White identity, having developed historically out of a nationalized Christian identity that had superseded Jewish identity is very much an identity due for biblical critique. …

Most people don’t know that Moses married a dark-skinned woman, because most people don’t read the book of Numbers. And if someone does read Numbers, they probably don’t know that the Cushites had dark skin, and miss the colorism of Moses’ siblings in chapter 12.

When I first learned that Moses married a Cushite woman, it took a while for the significance of it to settle in. Possibly the most important person in the Old Testament was in what we would today call an interracial marriage, with God’s uncompromising approval. …

The Stunning Story of Stetson:

Aspiring to a New Vision Through Staff Unity and Student Leadership

How do you take a state’s second most dangerous middle school and turn it around without having to suspend or expel a single student all year? How do you do that with the same principal that had been there when the school was violent?

“So I see him — his head split open, blood all over the place — and to me, that’s still my kid. That really hit me hard… these kids, good, bad or indifferent — they are our kids. …

Bill Melone

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