Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. famously said in April of 1960 – “I think it is one of the tragedies of our nation, one of the shameful tragedies, that eleven o’clock on Sunday morning is one of the most segregated hours, if not the most segregated hour, in Christian America.”
Since the early 90’s, the churches and ministries I oversee have been diligently working to tear down the dividing walls of division and hostility between people of different ethnicities. I often thank God for surrounding my life with people of color who have been sincere friends and co-laborers for decades. A few are pictured here, but there are countless others who have brought richness to my life through their cultural identity and their faith in Jesus.
In 1998, I preached a message called “The Reconciled Church” to our church in Raleigh-Durham, NC. This message became a turning point for our predominantly white congregation.
A prominent black businessman happened to hear about this message and was shocked to hear this from a mostly white church. He purchased 200 copies of the message and shared them with city leaders. We quickly became known as a church that was intentional about reconciling blacks and whites. 25 years later, that congregation is now led by a black man and mirrors the demographics of the city hosting more than 75 ethnicities. There is no doubt our efforts are still needed in today’s racially charged environment. I hope you’ll take some time to listen to this message and dedicate your life to being a minister of reconciliation.
The Reconciled Church
This sermon was delivered from the King’s Park pulpit, more than two decades ago, but remains relevant and critical today. It set the tone for King’s Park to become a prominent voice for racial reconciliation in the church. The message itself was widely received throughout the Triangle and it became a catalyst for reconciling ethnicities, cultures and communities. May God bless you as you listen to this message.
Over the course of last year, our leadership team in New York City began an intentional journey to listen, understand and contend for unity and healing among God’s people. I deeply appreciate their commitment and empathy.
To underscore this commitment, I developed a “Brief Theology on Race and Racism,” with Scripture and historical context to help all of us have a greater understanding of the factors that shape “race” as we know it in American society and specifically the church. I invite you to join us in this journey by reading more here.
For all of this, we owe all credit to God and the historic role played by Dr. King and many others who fought the good fight of faith and paved a way for us to be the recipients of his “Dream.”
Thanks Dr. King! I’m honored that King’s Park International Church is located in Durham adjacent to the Boulevard which bears your name.
I love doing ministry with Pastor James Lowe from our sister church in Brentwood, TN. One of my favorite memories was taking him to China and watching him wash the feet of the seasoned Chinese house church leaders.
Dr. Pamela Rowsey is the godmother of my beautiful twin daughters. She earned her PhD from the University of Michigan, and became the first African American to receive tenure at the UNC School of Nursing.
After 20 years of doing ministry together I was honored to turn over local leadership of our RTP/Durham congregation to my friends, Pastor Reggie and Bomi Roberson, in September 2017.
I have been watching this dynamic evangelist since he was 19 years old become an amazing husband, father, and church planter of Second City Church: Pastor Rollan Fisher.
A close friend and one of our great pastors at Every Nation NYC, Shino Prater is a man of God.
In Durham, Manhattan and Los Angeles, my friend, George and his wife LaTondra, have made disciples and helped marriages; he is now an NFL Chaplain.
Dr. Nii Addy is doing extraordinary work as a Professor, Doctor and a believer in Christ. It’s been an honor to partner with him to help people get well and know God.
Dr. Ugo Iroku and his wife Tammy serve as elders and leaders in our Manhattan congregation.