Moonlight is a rare film, harnessing critical acclaim and popular attention while challenging its audience to face a complex reality. Based on playwright Tarell Alvin McCraney’s own story, Director Barry Jenkins immerses us in the life of Chiron, a poor, black, gay man, as he struggles to claim his identity in an unforgiving place. As … Continue reading The Spiritual Quest & The Struggle To Name Ourselves – Review of Moonlight
Last week I was lazily scrolling through my Facebook feed when I ran across yet another of Franklin Graham’s ignorant xenophobic statements. As a Latina evangelical it made me so angry I almost threw my phone across the room. God does tell us to help the stranger and those in need; but God doesn’t tell … Continue reading I Stand with the 19% Who Resisted & I’m Not Leaving the Evangelical Church
Church hurt…well, it hurts. And I am no stranger to the ways in which bad theology, abuses of power, misguided politics and bigotry can manifest within a community and influence the ways church folks and religious bullies perpetuate damage to vulnerable, human souls. In Healing Spiritual Wounds: Reconnecting With A Loving God After Experiencing A Hurtful Church, Carol Howard Merritt weaves into just over two hundred pages personal narrative and years of professional ministry experience, providing a compelling case for finding wholeness in God despite experiencing pain at the hands of God’s people.
I’m a person who others look to for inspiration. In times of crisis and despair, I’m called on for prophetic truth telling. These are my gifts and my call. However, today I’m struggling with this call. I am trying to hold together seemingly disparate parts of myself. I’m trying to lead in the midst of coming to terms with some truths that have recently been revealed; truths that I’m ashamed of admitting.
But my journey as an Afro-Latinx human being also taught me much more than about what it meant to be Afro-Latinx in a country that doesn’t see us. Being Afro-Latinx taught me about the U.S.’s failure to reject (and in turn, the Church’s own difficulty to reject) binary ways of thinking and binary ways of seeing people. For most of my life, I felt like I had to go into a neat box in order to belong. A Latinx box. A black box. I felt like I couldn’t be both things at once. I could not be multitudes.
The Church needs to be okay with questions of why. Discussing them will make The Church stronger, not weaker. If you are a church leader and you are not comfortable talking about the why of your beliefs, maybe you need to rethink your beliefs. If you are a Christian and your stomach knotted up while you read this (like mine would have a couple of years ago), take a deep breath.