does ethnicity matter in church?
As summer draws to an end, people will be getting back into a more normal routine without scattered vacations getting mostly everyone out of sync. One conversation that’ll be picking back up is the Next Gener.Asian Church Skypecast Conference call, scheduled for Sunday, September 2, 2007 at 9pm Eastern /6pm Pacific. Yes, folks, that is during the middle of Labor Day weekend. I haven’t scheduled a vacation weekend there, so I should be able to join the call.
You can join the call by using Skype, a free download and a free call. For the curious, the Skype outage that lasted for almost 2 days last week had been resolved, and the network is more reliable than ever. You can read their techie notes on what happened and further clarification about the Microsoft connection or lack thereof.
This month’s conversation topic: What role could / should / does ethnicity play in the Asian American church?
In addition to the quotes already posted as conversation starters, I’d add this reflection from David Park:
In our churches, we emulate White America to the extent that if I closed my eyes and went into any given EM in the country, I wouldn’t even know that it was a non-white congregation. None of the content or presentation is tied to our ethnic identity. To add to the madness, if we actually take what we’ve learned to heart and abandoned the ethnic church to attend white churches, it becomes a huge crisis in our parents’ churches while at the same time we get token seats for increasing diversity at newly minted “multi-ethnic” churches. But at the same time, our white friends will say something as inane as, “I don’t even think of you as Korean.”
So many of us have been slaves for so long, we’ll take any master as long as he doesn’t look like us because we can hardly stand to be ourselves, much less to be concerned for ourselves. Why? Because every good slave knows that a child of the master is more valuable than the child of another slave.
In my work and hobby of networking with Asian Americans, there are some who believe ethnicity plays absolutely no role whatsoever in the church. And ironically, those who say that ethnicity plays no role would tend to attend a church that is majority Asian Americans.