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Y’all keep responding to my thread(s) with so much 🔥 and y’all get me to going.


If I hear one more sermon on Acts 2:42-47 Jesus help me.

White churches talking about community really gets all over me.
First of all, everybody at your church don’t have to be your best friend. White folks stay wanting to have these connections and friendships to people that they don’t even like half the time, but anyway.
It’s annoyikg how a lot of these churches reduce community to everybody being “like family” and best friends. That’s not how it works. It’s fake as heck. It’s exhausting.
I get really frustrated with the instant friends and family that the white church tries to force people into being. It’s contrived and it all but goes away if you leave. People don’t have object permanence for you once you’re not there.
Anyway. I think back to growing up in the black church and I think of all of the dead saints who have meant something over the years. Some of them I’ve never been to their house or anything but they were still my siblings.
I remember when the mother of my church gave me a tract one of the last Sundays before I went off to college. It had a $50 bill in it. We didn’t have a dang small group or a coffee house, but that woman was like a mother to my mom and a grandmother to me.
That relationship was forged over years and not something out in the microwave of a church small group.
My grandma became an usher in my church at the age of 74. She eventually became head usher and a mother of our church. We buried her in her usher uniform.

Anyway, the leader of the ushers was a young man who lived down the street from us. He started coming over almost every day
He was about 18 years old when he started coming over. He would sit and talk to my grandma for HOURS. He sat with us after she had a stoke and was there through her cancer treatments. For two or three years.

We didn’t have fancy ministries, it’s just what we did.
We had picnics, programs, Park Days, potlucks and everything else to build community. We didn’t have to have freaking strategy meetings about it. We just did it.
We didn’t need to demand access to one another’s lives and homes. We just existed together. And it’s not just a local community thing.

My family started attending a church in a town we didn’t live in when I was in middle school Same kind of principles applied.
I appreciate the authenticity of not having to be all up in everybody’s face. We’re able to exist together and be a church family without a bunch of love bombing and extra.
Something that I really appreciate about the various episcopal churches that I’ve visited is Coffee Hour. It is a low pressure way to get to know folks. My church also has a monthly brunch. It’s been great to get to know people without all of the extra isht.
I am an introvert. I was raised by extroverts. A lot of these modern churches are geared toward a brand of extroversion that becomes hella toxic. People want quantity and bigness over quality. Y’all are so focused on getting people into folks houses that y’all miss it.
Being in somebody house ain’t extra intimacy. It’s just way too much way too soon in a lot of cases.

“But you can’t build deep relationships in the lobby at church.”

You can if you turn the dang music down for starters.

Bring back the fellowship hall.
Flip areas of the church into communal space.

Bring back having classes and topical studies.

Bring back the neighborhood parish.

There are a ton of ways to foster authentic community that don’t require you to preach Acts 2:42-47 or to force people into “community.”
I have observed that white churches are super obsessed with getting people into one another’s houses and “sharing meals” as if these actions alone are enough to create community and intimacy. That ain’t it. These things are the RESULT of community...not the path.
You know what creates community? Being around each other for years. Shared moments. Organic conversations with different people until you find someone you share commonalities with. Working together toward a collective purpose. Learning together.
I’m not saying that all small groups are bad or that you have to do away with it. These can be helpful for larger churches (I think that we need to move away from mega churches and back into neighborhood churches). But y’all need to rethink how you’re doing them.
Small groups are an inherently white and middle class thing. I pastored a church of working class white people and we could not get it to work. You know what did work? Serving coffee after church and having couches and tables all over in addition to pews.
Anyway, if y’all could stop talking about community and just learn to exist together, your church probably wouldn’t have as much traffic in and out as it does. 🤷🏿‍♀️
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