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Black Southern Baptists excluded from discussion of systemic racism

Black Southern Baptists excluded from discussion of systemic racism

Six Southern Baptist seminary presidents, all white, recently met and concluded Critical Race Theory is unbiblical. See our post here.

Black Southern Baptists responded Friday with a statement from the Rev. Marshal L. Ausberry Sr., President of the National African American Fellowship SBC and First Vice President SBC

His full statement is published in Baptist Press.

More from BP:

The seminary presidents’ statement said while condemning “racism in any form,” they agree that “affirmation of Critical Race Theory, Intersectionality and any version of Critical Theory is incompatible with the Baptist Faith & Message.”

In his response, Ausberry wrote that members of the National African American Fellowship “hold most sacred and dear to our hearts the supremacy of Scripture,” and affirmed the Baptist Faith and Message. But they also “recognize that there are ideologies from a sociological and anthropological perspective when used appropriately, help us to better understand the inner workings of a fallen and sinful world.”

In an interview with Baptist Press, Ausberry characterized the statement by the Council of Seminary Presidents as well-intended. But he said it created concerns not only among African American pastors, but also from representatives of other ethnic groups in the SBC.

“Especially for those of us who have experienced the brunt of systemic racism in our daily lives, our seminary presidents are good men and they had good intent,” Ausberry said, “but the optics of six anglo brothers meeting to discuss racism and other related issues without having ethnic representation in the room in 2020, at worst it looks like paternalism, at best insensitivity. The only outcome can be from their life experience, which really ignores the broader family of Southern Baptists.”

Ausberry’s use of the phrase “life experience” could refer to the experiential knowledge tenet of Critical Race Theory.

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