Recent events have precipitated the many conversations happening around the issue of race in America right now. I’m glad that these conversations are also happening in the area of Children’s Ministry. As uncomfortable and sometimes difficult it is for these conversations to occur, these conversations are so important to have.
A few months ago, I wrote about this very thing (you can find that post here). Shortly after that post, I came across a post in a Facebook group that caught my eye. A kidmin leader mentioned that she had transformed a puppet that she found from being a ‘thug’ to being more appropriate for church. To say that I was mortified would be a huge understatement, primarily because I didn’t know that a gold chain could classify a puppet a ‘thug’. When I responded (after praying about how to use the right words to respond appropriately), some said that I was over-reacting. Some said that the leader was not being racist and didn’t mean anything by it. I was even told to ‘lighten up’.
While I don’t know the woman’s intention, the point I wanted to make to the group was that we have to be careful in the language we use and how we view people (even puppets) who look different from us. My heart was grieved. What we say – and don’t say – says a lot.
My friend, Henry Zonio, reached out to me after my original posts to continue the conversation regarding race and Children’s Ministry. I wanted to share his article here with you so that you, too, can be part of the conversation.
You can access Henry’s article here: http://childrensministry.com/articles/race-today-red-and-yellow-black-and-white/
Special thanks to my friend Christine Yount Jones and the team at Children’s Ministry Magazine for running this article.
Keep the conversation going! What are your thoughts around this topic?