Chicago church will ‘fast from whiteness’ during Lent

First United Church of Oak Park/ Facebook

It’s cool to be racist again, and a church in the suburbs of Chicago is dropping any pretense of loving its neighbors with a “fast from whiteness” during Lent.

First United Church of Oak Park will not use any music or liturgical contributions “written or composed by white people” during the season, announced the church’s website, which was apparently overwhelmed and only intermittently viewable on April 6. Lent symbolizes the 40 days Jesus spent fasting in the desert.

According to The National Desk, the church’s website stated, when it was reachable: “In our worship services throughout Lent, we will not be using any music or liturgy written or composed by white people. Our music will be drawn from the African American spirituals tradition, from South African freedom songs, from Native American traditions, and many, many more.”

First United Church also celebrates its racist “fasting from whiteness” liturgy through written reflections called “evotionals,” according to Turning Point USA, which acquired alleged screenshots of one titled “Kindness and Privilege” from March 29. That “evotional” cites Bruce Reyes-Chow, a minority pastor and author who has written books such as, “Don’t Be an Asshat: An Official Handbook for Raising Parents and Children” and “But I Don’t See You as Asian: Curating Conversations about Race.”

“How we express kindness depends on our own social context, experiences, culture and privilege,” reads the excerpt from Reyes-Chow’s book that was shared in the “evotional.”

And kindness, to the First United Church of Oak Park, is apparently public and high-profile prejudice against other human beings based upon the color of their skin.

The National Desk (TND) reports that it reached out to First United’s lead pastor, Rev. John Edgerton, to learn more about First United’s “fast from whiteness” and what led to the decision to create such an observance for Lent, but had not received an answer by April 6.


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