This Book Conversation was different than previous ones. According to Bernice McDonald from Church of the Transfiguration in Elizabeth, “This was the best and most relevant of the Conversations I've participated in." As with our previous books, Beyond Racial Gridlock by George Yancey was very thought-provoking.
In his book discussed January 29th, Mr. Yancey surveys a range of approaches to racial healing that Christians have used and offers a new model for moving forward. Part One of the book analyzes four secular models used also by Christians: Colorblindness, Anglo-conformity, Multiculturalism, and White Responsibility. He says that each has its own advantages and limitations.
Part Two offers a new Mutual Responsibility Model. Both majority and minority cultures have their own challenges, tendencies, and sins to repent of. People of different races approach racial reconciliation and justice in differing but complementary ways. Yancey's vision offers hope that people of all races can walk together on a shared path--not as adversaries, but as partners.
The last chapter is titled, “What Would a Christian Solution Look like?" Here, he explores ways in which Christians can display the Mutual Responsibility Model by considering worship in multi-racial settings, political activism, and Christian educational institutions.
What made this Conversation different is that we agreed to spend two weeks in prayer, after which we will again gather on Saturday, February 13th to share the insights and ideas God has revealed. How can we be faithful and move forward? What would that look like?
Our next book Conversation on Friday, April 30 will be about Passages to India by E. M. Forster.