Separation in Community

Every church is made up of people who have a past. There is no escaping this reality. The past we think about is often connected to the individual—addiction, prison, homelessness, divorce; but we don’t talk about the past of our communities—racism, gender bias, social and economic bigotry—as much as we should. In Remember the Titans (directed by Boaz Yakin, Buena Vista Pictures, 2000), a story about overcoming racial bias and segregation, the football team is playing its first game, and the scene pans to the spectators. Some of the black members of the audience point out, “Here we are on the same team, and they still won’t even talk to us.” The camera moves through the audience to show clearly that segregation is still alive and well in the community. This type of scene shows up on Sunday mornings across the United States in churches everywhere, and similar divisions exist throughout the world. Paul’s call to see one another as new in Christ is as imperative today as it was nearly two thousand years ago.