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Tony Evans: ‘Failure of the Church’ has led to America’s current racial problem

Texas pastor Tony Evans says churches have an obligation to help fix the current divide in America because churches stood on the wrong side of multiple issues of race during the past 200 years.

Evans made the comments this month to Scripps National News and to the Don Kroah Show on WAVA in Washington, D.C.

“The only reason this problem has existed this deep for this long is the failure of the church,” Evans said on the Don Kroah Show of racism and racial injustice. Evans is the author of Oneness Embraced and the pastor of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship in Dallas.

“Had the church not endorsed slavery, had the church not endorsed … segregation, Jim Crow and many of the systems, [then] they would not have been adopted and perpetuated in the culture. So since the church contributed to this mess, the church has got to fix it,” he said.

Evans gave examples of how he has experienced racism.
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Moody Bible Institute President Apologizes for Past Yearbook Photos Featuring Students in Blackface

Moody Bible Institute president Mark Jobe, along with other school leaders, has apologized for past yearbook photos that showed white students in blackface.

“Regardless of when these photos were taken, or what the intent of the students was at that time, these pictures are shocking and deeply offensive. As senior leadership of Moody Bible Institute, we come together in this letter to deeply apologize for these photos and the underlying ignorance and the racist foundation blackface represents,” Jobe wrote of the 1974 and 1984 yearbook photos, Christianity Today reports.

“This behavior absolutely does not reflect how we envision our Moody community, which is grounded in God’s Word and the gospel of Jesus Christ,” the statement said. “It also undermines the advancements we have made together in the area of diversity.”

Earlier in June, Jobe asked for nationwide prayers in response to the killing of George Floyd. He is working with provost Dwight Perry, author of Breaking Down Barriers: A Black Evangelical Explains the Black Church, to review the school’s history on racial issues.

“I am most discouraged, personally, not so much by the violence I see outside, even though I am very discouraged about that,” Perry said in a video of Moody leaders discussing race. “I am most discouraged by once again the lack of the evangelical church, which I am a proud member of, not necessarily taking the lead in solving some of these very, very deep problems.”

This isn’t the first time the school has dealt with race issues and “white privilege” on campus. In 2015, an event to be hosted by a black student called “White Like Me” was met with criticism and event posters were vandalized. Then-president J. Paul Nyquist responded by saying he supported the event and said the school needed more ethnic diversity.

Church of England says ashamed of its role in slavery

The Church of England said it was ashamed of the role that some in the Anglican Church had played in slavery though it also said that leading clergy helped abolish the trade.

“Slavery and exploitation have no place in society,” a spokesman for the Church of England said.

“While we recognise the leading role clergy and active members of the Church of England played in securing the abolition of slavery, it is a source of shame that others within the Church actively perpetrated slavery and profited from it.”

The Anglican Communion has 85 million members in over 165 different countries.

“In 2006 the General Synod of the Church of England issued an apology, acknowledging the part the Church itself played in historic cases of slavery,” the spokesman said.

Joel Osteen Marches With #BlackLivesMatter Protesters in Houston

Lakewood Church Pastor Joel Osteen marched alongside protesters for racial justice in downtown Houston, Texas on Tuesday, June 2.

Osteen told KHOU 11 that he joined the march in order to support Floyd’s family: “I came out to support the Floyd family, tell them that we love them, that we grieve with them. We care about them. We love them. We stand with our black brothers and sisters. We are all made in the image of God, so we’re just here to support them.”

Osteen said he hoped this would be a turning point for Houston.

“It’s an important time in our city,” he said. “We feel the pain. We’re all outraged. But I think we can turn the anger into action. We can do our part to love one another, to treat each other with respect and honor.”

He also expressed hope that, as in the biblical cases of Joseph and Stephen, God would take an evil act and “somehow bring good out of it.”

“I don’t believe George’s death is going to be in vain,” Osteen told KHOU 11. “God knows how to take what was meant for harm and somehow bring good out of it. This could be a turning point in our city and our nation. We can learn to love and accept each other in spite of our differences.”

Osteen is not the only Christian leader to support the protests. On Sunday, Passion City Church Pastor Louie Giglio told his congregation, “As your pastor, I not only support your right to speak up. I not only support your right to march; I say we all should march.”

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