Here at PV we are committed to God’s church being a place for all.  Our Cross-Cultural Ministry is dedicated to this biblical goal. Come join us this Saturday morning, Oct. 22, at 10:30 a.m. at Maumelle’s Lake Willastein for a Prayer Walk.  We are excited about the way God’s Spirit is moving among our church, and want to share the message of love and unity with our community.  We welcome your presence on this walk and in the CCM. Our own Pam Lee shares the following thoughts—Chuck

It has been said that 11:00am on Sunday morning is the most segregated hour in Christian America. In 2016, I hope you are saddened and appalled by that statement.  Maybe it is time the Christian Church had a Civil Rights movement. Central High School was desegregated in 1957; the interstate bus systems underwent desegregation in 1961. The Church then is nearly 60 years behind major desegregation efforts in America. In the area of race relations and diversity, the Church has remained largely unchanged, comfortable, complacent – SEGREGATED.
Do you think the God who created rainbows, chameleons, exotic species, and vibrant hues interwoven in a vast array of nature is disappointed when He observes our monochromatic pews of worship? By His handiwork, God loves color, diversity, harmony, and unity. The garment industry represented by its United Colors of Benetton gets it. The United Nations which promotes international humanitarianism gets it. The Olympics games bring athletes together from around the world. The Olympics and the United Nations are global demonstrations of solidarity, why not the Church? Unfortunately, a multicultural, Creator without partiality is praised within cross laden buildings in a homogeneous expression.

 

The Church should represent the world around it. God intended for His Son’s Church to be universal, represented by all nations, creeds, colors, ethnicities, generations, abilities, and disabilities. We are neither bond nor free, man nor female, but “One in Christ.” We believe God’s Church is for all, yet there has been a “failure to communicate.” The Church is a place where barriers can become nonexistent, and perceptions addressed via conscience, purposeful dialog. We’re called to go Deeper, be Greater; a peculiar people.

The challenge is: If courageous high school students in Little Rock can take a step to effect change, then conceivably, Pleasant Valley Church of Christ can become the prototype for other congregations as we demonstrate oneness through diversity in Church leadership, staffing, and teaching opportunities. Cross-cultural representatives serving during worship must be intentional.  A balanced, harmonious, multi-colored Church guided by the Holy Spirit, focused on the teachings of Christ, would demonstrate to the community, the “true” essence of God, cloaked in a mosaic tapestry of inclusion, and reflected through a kaleidoscope of love. Our service of love and unity through the bond of peace will become more visible to the community. When they look within our doors seeing themselves, perhaps those who do not know God will see Him, and see His Church as a place of acceptance.

It’s time our successes on mission fields, are duplicated in our own backyard as a catalyst for such change. The symmetrical presence of each member must be acknowledged and respected as valuable to the body.  Change takes commitment. PV should be committed to being on the forefront in making this paradigm shift. Someone has to take the lead. One thing is certain, without such commitment, there will not be change. Remaining unchanged will lead to complacency, and the continuation of the 11 o’clock hour of segregation in the American Church.

 


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