It seems as if people have placed their bets on Senator Barack Obama to be that man and he’s become some sort of mythic figure in the community, so sacred that he is beyond reproach or criticism. Keep in mind that Senator Obama is a political animal running for the highest office in the land and he will do what he needs to do to win the Electoral College. Even if that means turning his back on the man that led him into Christ. Over the past few months, Obama’s membership at the Trinity Church in Chicago has come under fire as its outgoing minister has come under fire for sermons he’s made over the years. Sound bites of which have been popping up all over the internet and on Fox News as well.
Reverend Jeremiah Wright delivered two televised speeches within the last few days touching on the media’s penchant for labeling him as divisive, when he’s merely being descriptive as he says, yet Barack has gone on the record saying that he is outraged and appalled at the comments Rev. Wright has made and their relationship may be irreparable. Nigga please! You sat in those pews for 14 years before you were a Presidential hopeful and soaked in every word and dropped an “amen” every now and again and “that’s right Pastor” when you felt it. Now, you turn your back on him? You’re the worst kind of Nigga; actually, you’re a Negro now!
All of this leads me to something that has been eating at me for quite some time. When was the last time you visited a church? I say visit, because I know most of you don’t go too often (I know the seven of you who do). At any point during the sermon, did you feel compelled to go on and give it all to the God? Feel like just turning your life over to Jesus? No? Then the preacher didn’t do his job! The choir neither! That Word is supposed to stir up something within your soul so deep that you’re ready o change your life (until you realize just how much fun you can possibly miss out on).
But that’s the problem with the Black Church as an institution, there’s been a paradigm shift, prophets have started to turn too much of a profit. Preachers are running around preaching the gospel of Prosperity. Way too many mega-churches out there! I’m not talking about Puffy’s preacher, that Nigga with the Phantom and the diamonds. There’s a mega-church down the street from you, where some wolf in sheep’s clothing is driving a Bentley or has three Mercedes-Benzes, yall just got a new church built, but there’s still a collection plate going around for the “building fund”! Speaking about prosperity, when half of the congregation is on a payment plan with PSE&G to cope with their new rates! They are leading the flock to the slaughter!
I remember a long, long time ago when I used to go to church. I really don’t remember why I stopped going, probably had something to do with the NBA playing their games earlier on Sunday. But Rev. Lattimore (I’m old school Rose of Sharon yall!) was such a quiet man, yet when he stood before that church, so much force and might came roaring through that microphone. It had no choice but to move you. See, I knew that when Pastor Lattimore took his robe off on Sunday, his ministry didn’t stop there; I’m not talking about because he led Bible Study on Wednesday night either. I’m saying because he was an educator, a philanthropist, he had been an advocate for Civil Rights; he holistically cared about the community in which held his churches’ roots.
Look back over our history; the church has been at the forefront of nearly every movement and noticeable change in our plight. Harriet Tubman freed slaves with a shotgun in one hand and a Bible in the other. Nat Turner was a preacher! It is Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Minister Malcolm X, I don’t always ride with him, but he is Reverend Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton is just another Nigga with a perm calling himself a Reverend. The mission of the church is serving as a place of healing for the members of its congregation and the community in which it is housed and its members live. The Church should be on the frontline of every fight! Poor school systems, gang violence, drugs,homeslessness, AIDS, Elder care, all of them! Every church in Plainfield should be organizing a march to have it’s say on the imminent closing of Muhlenberg Hospital. Maybe too many people are too busy getting paid to look around and see what’s happening.
I text quite the few of you who go to church on select Sundays and ask what was the Word that day, not that I’m being funny, but I really want to know. I want to know if you go into church and disappear into some fantasy world, where prayer automatically equals salvation and it’s going to get you home? Or if your minister said something similar to, “Niggas is gon’ be Niggas, so you might as well get this money!” Rather than give you a Word to help rebuild your spirit to go back through those doors and deal with a world of escalating prices of gas and food, decaying school systems and morals that are bordering on misfit levels.
This is all Rev. Jeremiah Wright is doing. Take a moment, go to CNN.com, go to YouTube and listen to an entire speech, see just how relevant it is. Go to pbs.com and download the Bill Moyers Report and watch the interview. See for yourself that he’s simply speaking truth and if the Church can’t speak the truth, what good is it?