Triple D: Diversity, Dallas, (Mic) Drop

During a recent address in Dallas, Texas, Dr. Jason Byassee, professor of homiletics at Vancouver School of Theology and a clergy member of the Western North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church, shared this thought:

In the mainline we have pushed tolerance for a generation or two and gotten whiter and older, less diverse. So if you want more aging white liberals, preach diversity. If you want more diverse people, preach Jesus, and see what diverse people he draws to himself.


This is 100% our experience at Good Shepherd, where by God’s goodness and grace we have grown one of the most racially and ethnically diverse churches in the denomination. Even that progress simply reveals how much further we have to go.

Yet Byassee’s claim is pivotal: when diversity is your Gospel, the result is similarly-hued people patting themselves on the back for how welcoming they would be if any people of a different shade showed up.

When Jesus is the Gospel, diversity is the result.

Let me repeat.

When Jesus is the Gospel, diversity is the result.

In our place, it’s a church where long-timers from Liberia welcome newcomers from Mongolia, and old-timers from Mecklenburg sit beside first-timers from Manila.

Because when the mic gets dropped in Texas, I want it lived out in Charlotte.