Blast to the Past – Adventist Segregation

Posted on May 4, 2010


Until I moved to the East coast I never really experienced Adventist segregation. I can’t believe the racial dividing lines that currently exist. The two conference systems under the Union leadership is unofficially known at “white conferences” and “black conferences.”

Even though the “black conferences” (staying with the known term) have a few Asian churches and I’m not sure what other nationalities are represented, they are for the most part, staffed by black people (I don’t like using the term African-American anymore… I have gotten to know a lot of black people who don’t look to Africa as their homeland). The issue is not is not about global location, it is about skin color. The “white conference churches” are much more diverse when it comes to skin color and acceptance, not perfect, but more diverse. Now we just need to mix up the colors a little more at the “white conference” level.

If secular USA can desegregate it’s bathrooms, buses, schools, and drinking fountains, I believe it’s time for us to desegregate God’s Church. We need Union leaders to work with conference leaders in merging conference offices. We should probably keep local state conference offices, which means we would have to lay off some of the current staff to make room and balance for the “black conference” leaders. If this were to happen, we would want to make sure didn’t lose our African-American heritage. We would need to designate an officer in each conference (along with a Hispanic, Asian, etc. office when needed) to organize this work.

A Little History:

C. M. Kinney, a black minister from Tennessee, was the first one to propose having black conferences back in 1889.  He believed that they would be more successful and be able to work more effectively among the black people and help ease some of the racial tensions in the church. The conferences would be on equal standing with the General Conference as white conferences.  (C.M. Kinney’s Statement on Regional Conferences 1889).

Read More Here: (I don’t agree with the complete answer)

What can we do to seek desegregation in the Adventist Church? What are your thoughts on the issue?

Posted in: Segregation