what happened to the black church?

i've often considered that question, but couldn't really speak to it in detail.

i didn't grow up in the church, and the one i did attend was not what anyone would consider part of traditionally black worship/culture, so i was never exposed to ch'uch except through friends.

maryland, though technically southern, is essentially a catholic state (and, by extension, also very episcopalian, episcopal and lutheran), and many descendants of slaves fell into the family religion of their owners. even so, there are also plenty of baptist, pentecostal, and storefront congregations.

the megachurches have mainly hit the suburbs, although there are a few large, overreaching congregations in baltimore city as well.

while the politics didn't stick around, some of the black spiritual movements of the early-mid 20th century did take a firm hold, including the nation of islam, daddy grace's church, noble drew ali's moorish science temple, and the hebrew israelites.

i think dr. hill is, on some level, making the argument my mother always did: once we were appeased by the slight gains of the modern civil rights era, black folks began to fully buy into mainstream american culture--good and bad. we sucked up the materialism, individuality and hedonism, ignorant of how to truly play the game and phenotypically unable to fit into it.

the result: we didn't wind up working on wall street in droves after desegregation, we wound up filling up the prisons. we also weren't able to shake our traditionally collective and family-oriented culture, even as our families were lost to us.

folks like creflo ain't helpin.

thanks for not throwing us youngins under the bus, brotha.

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