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Protestants discuss personalizing the Kingdom of God

Protestants discuss personalizing the  Kingdom of God
October 22
00:00 2015

By Timothy Ramsey

For The Chronicle

 

Interfaith Winston-Salem sponsored a forum on “God’s New Day” at the United Metropolitan Missionary Baptist Church at 450 Metropolitan Drive in Winston-Salem. This is the third event in the series “Ties That Bind, Protestants in Conversation.”

The forum was on Sunday Oct. 18.

Interfaith Winston-Salem is an all volunteer nonprofit that works to build understanding among religious and non-religious traditions.

The first event in the series centered around bringing different faiths in the community together to worship God in the wholeness of spirit and the truth.

The second forum focused on understanding individuals within the faith community who had issues that some deem in the church as not normal, and how the church can meet people where they are and let them see the truth of Christ no matter their race, sex or economic situation.

Sunday’s forum, which included a panel, touched on how the truth itself is progressive and how individuals within the church can take the Kingdom of God to each individual and help them to see that God will meet them wherever they are.

The Rev. James C. Hash Jr., board member of the “Ties that Bind” movement, stated, “We need to understand that it’s not that we are waiting on God, but God is waiting on us to interact with our culture and our world and to bring Christ to this generation.”

Dr. Bill Leonard, also a board member of the “Ties that Bind” movement, served as the moderator for the panel, which included the Rev. Terrance Hawkins, associate pastor of Winston-Salem First church; Mia Sloan, community activist of St. Peter’s World Outreach Center; and the Rev. Emily Hull McGee, senior pastor of First Baptist Church on Fifth Street.

Leonard started the forum off with a group prayer, then each panelist gave his or her response to the topic at hand. Once the panelist had his or her say, the audience broke into groups to discuss the matter further, then presented their findings to everyone table by table. This elicited some insightful responses from each group.

“We must refuse to buy the lie that anyone is a non-neighbor, but we must embrace the reality that everyone who was made in God’s image is our neighbor,” Hawkins said.

“I’ve been to the last few of these “Ties that Bind” gatherings, and I like how people from different traditions and denominations are coming together and talking about how we can exhibit the love of God more in Winston and beyond,” said audience member Tasha Gibson. “I like these gatherings for us to be able to sit at a table for a period of time and just listen to each other. Even though we come from different traditions and sides of the Protestant church, we can find common ground and who knows what that can lead to.”

Miranda Green stated, “One thing that I will take from here is the idea of us becoming a church and what that would look like in our different faith communities and us ministering out in the world and how that translates to the Millennials and how we can embody that for generations to come.”

Hash and Leonard stated that more panel discussions are to follow, as there are many topics that they wish to touch on, but no date has been set in stone as of yet.

For more information on Interfaith Winston-Salem, contact Jerry McLeese at jmcleese1@nullyahoo.com or call 336-722-9112.

 

 

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