I will deviate from my regular columns to speak about church. Not to turn sinners into believers but to talk about the state of the black church.
Sunday, I attended the 95th Annual Cape Fear Conference (Eastern North Carolina Episcopal District) of African Methodist Episcopal Zion churches and was elated to see an upwards of a 1,000 black people from different communities and churches come together on one accord, to praise God.
However, looking over the crowd many in the congregation are of the older elk. There is a huge absence of young people, 18 to 25 year olds. Especially black males 18 to 25. In fact, there are more women within the same age group that attends church more regularly than the males. This is the same age group of males who have the highest incarceration rates and gun deaths of anyone in the U.S.
The black church use to be a poweful foundation among black communities, a place where we as a people could go and escape the hell that surrounds us. A place where we could go and for a renewal, for an uplifting of our spirits.
But now, the black church is failing. It is failing in the uplifting, it is failing in the renewal, it is failing the community, it is failing in attracting the young adults back to church, it is failing the young black males.
Black people, as Christians we need to save our black males. It is not only the responsibility of the fathers of the church but everyone. We are losing our black males to hip-hop, drugs, jail and death and we are losing them quickly.
We need to pray our young men back to church and back to the Lord.
But we can only do it, on one accord.
For more information on the A.M.E. Zion logo, go to http://www.arps.org/amhersthistory/goodwin/Mother_zion/logo.htm