Thursday, November 01, 2007

Freedom from Western White Evangelical Captivity

Dr. Soong Chan Rah is unapologetic in declaring that what we need today is freedom from Western White Evangelical Captivity. His message declares that the majority culture in America in general and the church in particular must grapple with the growing minority culture and the God-ordained influence this culture is having on the church. His message is bold and clear. Without a doubt, Rah's message is a challenge. Yet, I could not agree more with his words concerning privilege and submission. So take some time to listen to this message, Freedom to Captives. It will make you think.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I wonder how much of the message is directed at the sort of burdens that minorities always bear in a society. In other words, it is generally true that when you say "church" in the US and you are talking with a white audience, they assume you mean a "white church." The same is true in other churches - if you have two black folks talking about "church," the normal assumption is that they mean "black church." If you have two Koreans talking about "church," the normal assumption would be that it is a Korean church. I don't see why this is such a huge issue - minorities in the US have always had to deal with it.

Let me explain in another way. If you are in Japan, what do you think of if you think of "church?" Chances are you are assuming your own background onto the word "church." I would love for us to assume that "church" includes lots of people of different backgrounds. But I don't think there's anything wrong with a Chinese Christian in Beijing assuming that "church" usually means "Han Chinese church." To assert that "Chinese church" must, of necessity, refer to Chinese Uiyghurs is just fighting linguistic reality.

I think most of the sermon's argument is actually carried by the minority-in-a-majority-white-culture argument. You could take half the sermon and excise Christianese from it, and it would just be a standard explanation of the difficulties all minorities have.

That said, there is plenty of good in here. I just wish it were not loaded with the distracting annoyances of deteriorating white dominance, or the immigration politics. White dominance is a given in a majority-white democracy, just as Japanese dominance is a given in majority-Japanese democracy. Sigh.