Friday, August 19, 2005

Racial Diversity in the PCA



The PCA (Presbyterian Church in America) has begun to publish a new magazine titled By Faith. It is a well done publication. You would be well served in subscribing to it. In the most recent issue, there is an article on the PCA's on going struggle for racial harmony and diversity. Interestingly, in the article I am cited as a "PCA leader." While this is not true, my friend believes that statement may be proleptic. Read the article for yourself: Content With One Voice in the Choir: The PCA's Challenge for Racial Diversity.

6 comments:

LouLove said...

You ever notice the pictures in articles? Well I did when I was reading the article you referred us to. The picture selection seems to depict more of the mindset of the author than his written words. As a matter of fact the pictures seem to be most telling of the idea of racial harmony by many in the Christian Church today. For example all the pictures with the exception of the opening one are pictures of African Americans within a predominantly white gathering which looks like a Church setting. From the little African American baby helpless in the arms of a white woman to the senior African American lady to the middle aged African American lady surrounded by white worshippers. This seems to suggest that racial harmony means white congregations with a few people of other ethnic backgrounds speckled here and there throughout the crowd. In other words racial harmony means go the white congregations, join the white congregations, sit under the white minister, be led by the white elders. Another thing that was intersting about the picture selection is the absence of the African American male, (again aside from the first picture, which is a story in and of itself). Now I realize that some would say I have this proclivity towards conspiracy, but I sense there are others (namely our buddy) who would agree with me, and he has first hand experience. I tend to consider the claims of racial harmony especially among white Christians to be somewhat disingenuous until they are prepared to sit under African American leadership both at the Church and denominational levels.

Valerie (Kyriosity) said...

Here's a picture for you, Lou: the adopted Chinese daughter of a Midwestern Dutch guy and his South Carolinian wife being baptized by an African American PCA pastor. That interracial enough for ya? ;-)

LouLove said...

Hey Valerie
Nice picture, I have one one observation and one question for you concerning your picture.

Observation: The Whites are still in the majority

Question:Why did you have to go and use Wy?

Valerie (Kyriosity) said...

Whites make up exatly 50 percent of the population of that photo, ergo they are not in the majority. Yes, there are more of them than of either of the other races represented, but a) they just didn't oblige us by adopting twins, and b) the parents, the baby and the pastor make up about the whole cast of characters you need for a baptism.

I suppose I could have used the shot that didn't include the mom, but the whole hinting at Midwestern/Southern marriage being an additional dimension of cross-culturalness was too amusing to omit. ;-)

And I "had to go and use" (what an odd choice of words) Pastor Wy because he was my pastor, and because the couple with the baby are my friends, and because I just came across the picture on the photographer's website the day before yesterday, and because it made me happy and I wanted to share it. Why do you ask?

LouLove said...

The fact that there are "more" whites represented in number than other races is what constitutes their majority (think about it). Although your mathematical reasoning is suspect, it is apparent that your heart for racial harmony is not.

"Go and use" is just like "go and do" i.e. "Why did you have to go and do that". Charge it to my Conway AR heritage.

I asked about Wy because it was such a pleasant surprise to see him in the photo. I met him several years ago at the Bethlehem Conf. for Pastors. He will not recognize my blog name but say hello to him for me anyway.

Valerie (Kyriosity) said...

Well, majority literally means more than half, so you'd have to have more than 50 percent to have a majority, and my mathematical reasoning is therefore impeccable. ;-)

I questioned "go and use" because the idea of "using" a person can have a bad connotation, but I see I was reading too much into your words. That's the great weakness of this medium -- you can't get all those nonverbal cues that give you the full sense of what a person's saying!

I'm afraid I won't be able to pass along your greeting, though. The Plummers are in the process of moving to Birmingham, and I don't expect to see them before they go.