I sure love it when someone else does my work for me. It doesn’t happen often, but this week an article in the Presbyterian News Service addressed the Fifth Great End of the Church much better than I ever could have.
I was preparing to dig into this fifth in the series, “the promotion of social righteousness,” when I came across the story of a congregation who did just that. Not only did it reveal what this looks like, but it also highlighted the struggle that many of our churches have with regard to stepping into “controversial” issues.
I think the term “social righteousness” could be interpreted in today’s language as right relationship, just relations, and social morality. It covers the areas of how we ought to be treating each other, the social mores that guide the character of our relationships, and the ethical principles that shape person to person and systemic relationships.
This week I am hoping that you will read this article of the Presbyterian Church of Deep Run in Perkasie, Pennsylvania that “put their money where their mouth was” and acted on the commitment they had made to the Matthew 25 Initiative. One of the three foci of that initiative is the dismantling of structural racism. They tackled it head on in their community. This is what happened and what they learned.
Read Here: Session Stands Up to Racism
In the comments this week, I would like you to reflect and comment on the following questions:
- We know that churches can’t endorse specific candidates due to their non-profit status. Does this also mean that churches shouldn’t address issues that are political in nature?
- Some people believe that when one goes to church that is should be reserved for spiritual matters. How does one determine whether an issue is purely spiritual or purely political?
- It was interesting to read that this church actually found more young people joining the church after they took a stand. Do you think this is coincidental or actually a reflection of the values of younger people?
Thank you for joining the conversation.
By Rev. Brian Heron, Presbyter for Vision and Mission, Presbytery of the Cascades