I asked if they had ever had conversations with the town 12 miles away, which has a part time PCUSA pastor, about a yoked pastorate. They wondered aloud about what a pastor would do. The pulpit is filled by church members, retired pastors, and commissioned ruling elders, and they – the members and community – do everything else.
We’ve had years, decades, centuries to change the virus of racism and yet, because it’s uncomfortable or maybe unimaginable or too scary or there’s too much risk or there’s too many unknowns, we’ve just let it infect every cell in our social bodies.
Besides all of this, I have been unable to get over the fact that the vast majority of my non-POC “brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus” in the Church have been reticent to speak with a single voice about this enormous and ongoing SIN of racism in America. Because I love Jesus Christ and his body deeply on this planet, I have a bone to pick with the Church in its whiteness. I am both mad and sad.
https://media.myworshiptimes31.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/55/2020/06/04172946/koshu-kunii-Q5sHZ-_lxvE-unsplash-scaled.jpg20482560Layton Williams/wp-content/uploads/sites/55/2016/01/NEXT-Logo-FINAL-Horizontal_lato-1030x229.pngLayton Williams2020-06-04 17:32:072020-06-04 17:32:07The SHIFT: It’s Time to Make That Change
I am writing this from my home in Minneapolis, half a mile from the Third Precinct police station that burned on Tuesday night and a block from a neighborhood bar that is still smoldering. Military helicopters fly close overhead. The air smells of tear gas and smoke. Images swirl in my head. Guilt weighs heavily on my heart. I worry about where we go from here.
https://media.myworshiptimes31.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/55/2020/06/03102034/IMG-2476-scaled.jpg19202560Layton Williams/wp-content/uploads/sites/55/2016/01/NEXT-Logo-FINAL-Horizontal_lato-1030x229.pngLayton Williams2020-06-03 10:25:182020-06-03 10:25:18From My Neighborhood in Minneapolis
But whatever its origins, many of us have embraced white-adjacency as our ticket to acceptance, at the expense of solidarity with the struggles of other people of color. Asian-Americans have been prominent in movements such as stopping affirmative action in colleges and protesting high school test reform. An alarming amount of Asian-Americans rail against “illegal immigration” since they “did it the right way,” and while various polls conflict as to the amount of support Asian Americans supported Trump, Filipino-Americans in particular seem to be near the top of Asian-American groups that have a significant minority of them supporting the man who called Mexicans rapists and drug dealers.
https://media.myworshiptimes31.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/55/2020/06/02135348/josh-hild-KRBrb8vRdKs-unsplash-1-scaled.jpg17072560Layton Williams/wp-content/uploads/sites/55/2016/01/NEXT-Logo-FINAL-Horizontal_lato-1030x229.pngLayton Williams2020-06-02 13:55:342020-06-03 09:10:26Let’s Talk About that Asian Cop in the George Floyd Video
If death isn’t your thing, re-think that. Because death and grief is all of our thing. In life and in death, we belong to God but in belonging to God, we belong to the realities of life and death. Those realities are present constantly, not just at bodily death, but death/grief of expectations, careers, ideas, understanding of society and one another. My time at the funeral home and other death experiences wasn’t just about death—they were about how we live, love, and have our being.
https://media.myworshiptimes31.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/55/2020/05/14154200/anton-darius-lQMtXKvBmuw-unsplash-scaled.jpg17072560Layton Williams/wp-content/uploads/sites/55/2016/01/NEXT-Logo-FINAL-Horizontal_lato-1030x229.pngLayton Williams2020-05-14 15:46:062020-05-14 15:46:06Death and the Life of Ministry
I spend a significant amount of time on Youtube every few months watching writer/producer/actor/model/unrequited BFF, Issa Rae do press and various interviews. I was deep in one of these YouTube rabbit trails not too long ago and ran across her interview with a correspondent from Variety. The same correspondent to whom she told her now famous line on the Emmys red carpet in 2017, “I’m rooting for everybody black!”. What a line, what a statement, what a vibe (as the young folx say)? The film and television industry has historically been a very white industry where privilege and nepotism reign supreme. I know another mammoth institution that can claim this history, do you?