Senior Pastor of Celebration Church
Stovall Weems, along with his wife Kerri, founded Celebration Church in Jacksonville, FL, in 1998. From its inception, the vision of Pastor Stovall was to build a racially diverse church that would look like heaven. Twenty years later that dream is a thriving reality, reaching people from all walks of life. Celebration is a racially diverse, multi-site church with campuses in Jacksonville, Amelia Island, Orlando, Fort Lauderdale, Washington D.C., Zimbabwe (Africa) and Paris (France).
A CALL FOR CHANGE.
Martin Luther King Jr. shared these prophetic words on December 18, 1963, during a question and answer session at Western Michigan University:
“…[T]he church is still the most segregated major institution in America. At 11:00 on Sunday morning when we stand and sing, “In Christ there is no east or west,” we stand at the most segregated hour in this nation. This is tragic. Nobody of honesty can overlook this… if the church had taken a stronger stand all along, we wouldn’t have many of the problems that we have.”
These words sting. Unfortunately, they’re still true today. Walls must come down and conversations must take place; we must bear one another’s burdens and walk in one another’s shoes for the church to experience the unity and revival that God desires. The heart of God is for revival and restoration. In order for this to take place, God’s word is clear that there needs to be compassion and understanding toward injustice, especially racial injustice. This book is about much more than inclusivity, diversity, and social justice. It is about the cross and Jesus’ dream for His bride, the Church, to be one.
Racial reconciliation is not only a social issue or a political issue. It is a profoundly spiritual matter. Jesus came to reconcile us to the Father and to one another, but reconciling to our fellow man looks different than many people think. The Church needs to follow the example of Jesus and bring into light the racial tension that exists in our society and around the world. We are not living in the oneness that Jesus died on the cross for until we first begin having dialogue with those who are different from us. When we have this dialogue, experience forgiveness, and extend forgiveness to one another, we reveal God’s heart and show the world who Jesus really is.
The hope is that this book and its accompanying resources will help churches, individuals, families, and communities begin the appropriate conversations and gain the understanding necessary for the church to be proactive in bringing healing to our world.
NEW BOOK from STOVALL WEEMS
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