01.19.16

The Urban League on The State of the Black Church

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In the good ole days, mama got you up, and you went to church. Is that still the case for The Black Church? Is the black church still relevant in our community or relevant as it has ever been? How has the church been involved with the #BlackLivesMatter movement? What might we do to get more people in the doors of black churches? C’mon up and join this discussion on the state of the black church hosted by The Urban League, who provides an annual “State of Black America” report.

Isaac Adams
Isaac Adams serves as the editor of The Front Porch. Holler at him on Twitter: @isickadams
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C’mon Up!

  • Stacey Westfall

    Interesting report on the church. Coming from a Reformed Baptist perspective, I would say that the state of the black church is the same as across all demographics, which Rev. Lee also stated. Although I agree with his comments about the transition between the baby boomer generation and the younger generations finding their own voice, I would say that the change is that the younger generations are not satisfied with the way baby boomers did church and want more expository preaching, more church discipline and accountability and more discipleship and that those are the reasons why the younger generations are moving away from a lot of the traditional black churches and planting more reformed black churches (which are smaller in number anyways, even within white churches.) In my experience a lot of the older folks get upset when they hear you talking about church planting, they think that there are enough churches already and we should keep their doors open. They do not want to reform and fight the changes that would bring more youth in. Has anyone else experienced that?

    • Trey

      Yes, Stacey. I’m currently in the beginning stages of planting a church in my city of birth. It so happens that I’m working with white, reformed brothers to do this for the very reason that I’ll quote you in saying, ” it is easier to plant a reformed church instead of revitalizing/reforming an old one.” I went and spoke with the church leader of my youth but to no avail. Where I’m from, there is a relentless cloud of cultural Christianity that sits over my city. And frankly, too many of the pastors have lost credibility with the younger citizens. Furthermore, a good many of the black churches in my city are propagating the prosperity gospel outright, or some sort of hybrid version of it. At any rate, I simply want to be the living organism that the church was created to be that spreads and replicates by the promise and declaration of Messiah.