Making places is a privilege that requires power and resources. The history of places like Grand Rapids tells a sad story of concentrating that privilege into the hands of a race of people who have continued to pursue profit at the expense of people.
I grew up on a small acreage in central Iowa, fifteen miles from the nearest town. I left home when I graduated from high school and I haven’t lived there for any significant period of time since I was 18. Now, you might find this strange, but I miss the landscape of central Iowa.
If your heart is tugging at you to respond to the call of global service, we affirm that call, but we encourage you, among other things, to learn as much as you can about the field of international development and to apply the “best practices” along the way.
When we become so afraid of doing the wrong thing that we fail to even try to do the right thing, something is askew.
A careful reading of African-American church history reveals that African Americans have a long history in Presbyterianism. Despite the small numbers of African-American Presbyterians relative to the overall numbers of African-American Christians, they must be considered an important population within the broader scope of the African-American church tradition, owing to their beginnings in slavery and their prophetic voices within the Church and American society.
The CRC’s stance on race mirrors that of the larger society: most people say that they oppose racial discrimination—and yet when the costs of racial integration might actually start costing something, they tend to get indifferent.