This week at BCC, we are pleased to commemorate the 1978 revelation on the priesthood which extended the priesthood offices to all worthy males, regardless of race. Through a joint effort with Dialogue, we will be looking back at the ban on black church members holding the priesthood through a series of posts that use the lenses of history, culture and memory to help us understand this part of our church history.
Even today, many church members are sketchy on the details of the ban, having heard folk myths, rumors, or contradictory statements. Sunday School teachers frequently have to tiptoe gingerly around the issue when questions are raised. Converts to the church, especially those of color, are often disenchanted to learn after baptism that this is a part of our church history. The question of how this could have happened in our church is thrown around often. Through a comprehensive look at the issue and participation from our readers, we hope to reflect on where our church has been and where we are going in regards to how we relate to one another.
There is already a wealth of scholarship out there that is available to those who want to know more. This week we hope to point each other in the right direction. We’ll open by referring readers to Armand Mauss’s informative paper for FAIR. Mauss has graciously agreed to post with us later this week. In the meantime, this paper, especially the question & answer section, is a great resource to look at.