By Tony Perkins
When President Obama made history as the first African-American President in U.S. history, people assumed that racial relations would be stronger than ever. Much to everyone’s disappointment, the tensions — inflamed by a series of unfortunate events — have rarely been higher. Thursday, in Dallas, FRC’s Lt. Gen. Jerry Boykin, Ken Blackwell, and I joined in what I consider to be a significant event called The Reconciled Church, aimed at bringing leaders of the white and black community together under the shared love of Jesus Christ.
At least 150 leaders from across the country converged on Texas at the invitation of Bishops Harry Jackson and T.D. Jakes, convinced that in our divided society, the church can model unity. In a nation looking for answers after the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner, we agree that the church must lead in this crucial moment.
After a very candid and honest discussion, there was an acknowledgement that the racial obstacles in our country are significant — but that despite our different backgrounds, we can help heal the divide. Of course, one of the greatest ironies is that the very thing that can offer solutions to these problems and help strengthen society is the religious liberty so obviously under attack. No one understands that more than the African-American community, whose own Kelvin Cochran was fired simply for believing and promoting the Bible’s teachings on sexuality.
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For those of us in the room, there was a clear understanding that true unity will not be found in words, but in actions. Several practical initiatives were discussed that churches — regardless of size or location — could join. One is the National Church Adopt a School Initiative that’s being spearheaded by Dr. Tony Evans. This effort offers churches a way to bridge the divide in their communities by coming alongside the local schools in helping children succeed in school, which ultimately helps the families of that community. Click here to find out more about the Adopt a School Initiative.
** One night before the State of the Union address, I’ll be delivering a speech of my own on the State of the Family. Don’t miss the 7:00 p.m. (ET) broadcast this coming Monday, January 19, as FRC outlines key priorities on life, marriage, and religious liberty for the 114th Congress. Click here for more info.
Tony Perkins is president of the Washington, D.C.-based Family Research Council. He is a former member of the Louisiana legislature where he served for eight years, and he is recognized as a legislative pioneer for authoring measures like the nation’s first Covenant Marriage law.
(Via FRC’s Washington Update. Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.)
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