How 1,000 Pastors Pursue Racial Reconciliation

Personal relationships and prayer preferred over preaching and protests.
How 1,000 Pastors Pursue Racial Reconciliation

Nine out of 10 American pastors say they recently encouraged racial reconciliation. Their favorite method: Breaking bread with someone of another ethnicity.

A new survey of 1,000 Protestant senior pastors by LifeWay Research examines how they address race beyond the pulpit, as well as whether their congregations demand such sermons.

Almost three-quarters (72%) of pastors have shared a meal with a diverse small group of people (less than 10) in the past month. That includes 44 percent who say they’ve had such a meal in the past week.

The proportion is similar among white pastors, 42 percent of whom say they’ve had a meal in the past week with a diverse group. Such meals are more common among African-American pastors (52%) and pastors of other ethnicities (60%).

The proportion varies by denomination. Pentecostal (50%), Methodist (48%), and Baptist (46%) pastors were more likely to have shared a meal with a diverse group in the past week, while Presbyterian/Reformed pastors (34%) ...

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