Joint Church Fellowship in Mississippi Hopes to Bridge Racial and Denominational Divide Among Christians

Two churches, alike in the sense that they worship the same God, but different in the racial makeup of the congregation, joined in fellowship Sunday.

Allen Jenkins, pastor of the First Baptist Church in Bay St. Louis, and Claire Dobbs, pastor of the First United Methodist Church in Gulfport, couldn’t help but notice that Sunday mornings still remain segregated in many communities, where black people go to churches with black congregations and white people go to churches with white congregations.

“Mississippi has a history of poor race relations, as we all know,” Jenkins said.

Both questioned why in this time period, if they practice the same religion, why are they doing it in separate spaces. So they decided to bring their churches together for a worship service.

“We should be on the forefront of bringing people together, and if the body of Christ is divided, we can’t be an example to the world,” Jenkins added.

During a Sunday school forum, white people and black people could ask honest, open questions without fear of offending someone or getting shut down.

One of the worshipers brought up the role that many churches played in promoting segregation, questioning if that could be why churches seem so racially segregated.

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Source: WLOX