American churches are still segregated along racial and ethnic lines, despite aspirations to the contrary, according to a study released by LifeWay Research this week.
Research into pastors’ views on ethnicity and the Church found that 85 per cent of pastors believe churches should strive to be ethnically diverse, but 86 per cent said their church communities predominantly belong to one racial or ethnic group.
The findings echo the words of Dr Martin Luther King, who 50 years ago famously said that “the most segregated hour of Christian America is eleven o’clock on Sunday morning”.
“Everybody wants diversity, but many don’t want to be around people who are different,” said Ed Stetzer, president of LifeWay research.
The survey of more than 1,000 Protestant US pastors was conducted by the Christian resource provider in September 2013.
More than 90 per cent of those questioned said local churches should reflect their local communities with regard to race and ethnicity.
Pastors in the South were the most likely to disagree with the statement that their churches had a similar ethnic mix to the surrounding area. Although only 12 per cent said they “strongly disagreed” with the statement, pastors in this region were also the least likely to “strongly agree”.
But when asked whether churches should strive to achieve diversity, pastors in the South were more enthusiastic in their support than those in the Midwest, with 70 per cent saying they “strongly agreed”.
In an additional study from an online survey of 1,039 Americans, 78 per cent said they thought churches should strive to achieve racial diversity. The strongest affirmative response came from those who described themselves as born-again, evangelical or fundamentalist Christians.
Researchers found that just over half (51 per cent) of respondents said they would be most comfortable attending a church where people from multiple ethnicities were represented, and four in 10 said they already attend an ethnically diverse church.
Even so, 19 per cent still said they would prefer to attend a church where people were mainly of the same ethnicity as them.
Source: Christian Today
WHAT DO YOU THINK?- We have all sinned and deserve God's judgment. God, the Father, sent His only Son to satisfy that judgment for those who believe in Him. Jesus, the creator and eternal Son of God, who lived a sinless life, loves us so much that He died for our sins, taking the punishment that we deserve, was buried, and rose from the dead according to the Bible. If you truly believe and trust this in your heart, receiving Jesus alone as your Savior, declaring, "Jesus is Lord," you will be saved from judgment and spend eternity with God in heaven.
What is your response?
If you are not a Christian, and would like to become a Christian. Simply say - "LORD Jesus, thank you for forgiving me of my SINs, today I am deciding to follow you. Accept me into your family, in Jesus name I pray. Amen "
If you still have questions , click here to Contact Us, we are here to help
Unless otherwise specified, the news and opinions expressed are solely the source's and author's and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Christian Mail.