Bishop Vashti Murphy McKenzie Children's Love Centergreenspun.com : LUSENET : A.M.E. Today Discussion : One Thread
Bishop McKenzie has informed us here in the Second-to-None, First-for-Christ Episcopal District that one of her major priorities in the l8th will be directed towards the children who are liveing on the streets, because either their parents have died or are dying from AIDS. She has further stated that orphanages are needed, but that she did not like the name orphanage. My spirit began to click. It seems to me that most bishops who are assigned overseas leave something in their name--thusly the spirit gave me the name of the BISHOP VASHTI MURPHY MCKENZIE CHILDREN LOVE CENTER. She is aware of this idea and really didn't respond (I think) because she has to get used to the idea of being on the bench, in the first place, and this is not the kind of thing she is accustomed to having me do. In accordance with this vision, the missionaries of Union Chapel A.M.E. Church in Cambridge Marylalnd have agreed to spearhead the building of what I hope will be the first of a chain of centers for children in the l8 Episcopal District. To achieve this goal, we are respectfully requesting that contributions be sent to: The BVMM LOVE CENTER FOR CHILDREN, 18th Episcopal District, in care of Union Chapel A.M.E. Church, 5160 Cordtown Road, Cambridge, Maryland 21613. Accurate records will be kept. The donations will forwarded to Bishop McKenzie. A donors' plaque will be placed on the walls of the facility.
The motto of Union Chapel is LOVE IN ACTION. Won't you prayerfully join us in this effort and help our REVEREND MOTHER IN GOD achieve one of her visions????? Hallelujah!!!
Yours in His Service, Sis. Lucinda Whittington, President Missionary Society Vivian B. Castain, Sista Pastor
-- Anonymous, September 02, 2000
Why can't it be given a biblical name. What is in the name anyway. It is amazing that you are sitting here in the United States working out African Affairs. Is Bishop Vashti McKenzie going to be stationed in Africa or will she be like some of the others just a name without any presence. You cannot be effective if you are not living amongst the people of God. So VB let Bishop Vashti handle her district. Bishops come and Bishops go. Buildings are named after them and the next Bishop renames it. So make it biblical and not personal. Bishop Ingram just upset the whole 15th district making plans without taking the people situation into consideration. It's all about Him. So lets wait and see how these Bishops perform first before we go about naming things after them.
-- Anonymous, September 06, 2000
James I think you were a little hard on the sister. In regard to African Affairs we are all Africans. Anything that affects people of African Nature is Pan-Africanism. From what I understand Bishop McKenzie will reside amongst her District. I have had the opportunity to observe her and I see that she is a caring compassionate woman who has a great vision. Instead of being upset about the matter of a Bishop's residence look at the work that the Bishop will and has done. A center for children is something that is needed not just on the continent of Africa but it is something that stretches to the shores of the extended family here in America.
-- Anonymous, September 06, 2000
It is regrettable that an act of kindness can be so rudely chastised before it is even executed. Perhaps the alternative is preferred: do nothing and stay state-side. I think not.
Let us separate the polity and anger from the real need. Is there truly a need for love, compassion, and caring of the forsaken children of the 18th? Would it not be better, then, to light a candle of illumination than to torch such a need in the heat of frustration and anger?
Perhaps the political issue can be moved to a separate thread, where, with facts, it can be debated. For the need, let us focus on helping the 18th, and doing what Jesus would Do (Matt 25:38-46).
-- Anonymous, September 06, 2000
I do not think it is rude but rather a refreshingly honest approach. I am sure that Bishop V. McKenzie is most probably thinking along the same lines, hence the hesitance in replying. Far too many Bishop/Leaders respond to an appeal only if a building or church is named after them. That kind of help we could very well do without. It would be appropriate if the name of the building is honoured by having the Bishop giving a name for the project. There are many buildings/churches named after certain people in South Africa who turned out to be quite an embarrassment.
-- Anonymous, September 07, 2000
It is amazing to try and understand the comments that Americans have on African Affairs. Bro Payne says for us to seperate polity and anger from the real need. No it should be let us (you Americans) become more in tune to what is really occurring in Africa. Bro James seems to be very insightful and when I read his response I assumed that he was an African. He surely was not rude but very honest in his opinion. In order to make sense with Americans you sometimes have to be rude because they know it all. Americans does not have a clue of what Africa is all about. When you tell them you are from Sierra Leone they will ask you do you know my cousin in South Africa...Duhhh Bishops tell these heart-wrenching STORIES To raise money for their ditricts in Africa, and when they leave the district is still the same or even worse. I am looking forward to the coming of Bishop McKenzie and I pray that she truely will make a difference. I know they will fit in very well as her husband looks just like us. We as AME's must admit that we are in a serious state of denial. Americans love to passify. Honesty is the best Policy and it is God.
-- Anonymous, September 13, 2000
I am not one given to personal debate, but I think my position on this matter needs to be clear. And perhaps the positions of all contributing should be clear as well.
It is amazing to try and understand the comments that Americans have on African Affairs. Then let me explain the comment. Is there a need for an orphanage? Let us address the need - together! Rev. Castain was offering to serve as a center for funds gathering to address the need. Now if the need doesn't require funds, let's move on. What I have trouble with is lumping everything together, and thereby obscuring the need. I am not unaware of the resentment that some have expressed for imperial leadership, for self-agrrandisement, and other allegations. Since this forum seeks to maintain a high standard ethically and journalistically, I did not wish to engage in mud-slinging. However, one must presume that 104 years of external leadership in a land or lands that have long resented the lack of enfranchisement would necessarily yield a sensitivity to which others may not be fully attuned. I accept that - but that was not the presenting issue. Rather than lovingly explain the resentment, the tougher, less polite response was offered. So now you have our attention.
Bro Payne says for us to seperate polity and anger from the real need. No it should be let us (you Americans) become more in tune to what is really occurring in Africa. Yes, we Americans should be more in tune! I agree!!! And forums like AME Today offer an excellent opportunity for learnings, providing the venue where issues can be discussed, solutions proffered, synergies developed, and love expressed. But the creation of the orphanage and the naming it after a sitting bishop are two different things. Can we please separate the two, so that both can be addressed effectively?
Bro James seems to be very insightful and when I read his response I assumed that he was an African. He surely was not rude but very honest in his opinion. Perhaps we have a different understanding of "rude". I saw someone who had a genuine enthusiasm for orphaned children rebuffed succinctly for wanting to name it after the coming leader. That is apparently a sore spot for some, and I don't dispute that. But do you think it really appropriate to abengate such enthusiasm? Could there not have been a gentler way to raise or illuminate that concern? If the answer is "yes", then I submit the chosen method was beyond the need.
In order to make sense with Americans you sometimes have to be rude because they know it all. I see. All 300 million Americans are "know it all", thrown into one group. Interesting.
Americans does not have a clue of what Africa is all about. This is one of the reasons I look forward to columns, readings, and contributions here from our brethren in Africa. I am looking for clues.
When you tell them you are from Sierra Leone they will ask you do you know my cousin in South Africa...Duhhh I agree that our educational system here as a whole could do a better job of teaching African history, geography, politics, and sociology.
Bishops tell these heart-wrenching STORIES To raise money for their ditricts in Africa, and when they leave the district is still the same or even worse.This is the message you need to document. And which bishops: all? I have seen over the past few years some bishops absolutely trashed, but then I hear of others - Bishop Thomas, Bishop Ming - who are revered. And are you speaking only for your district, or for all Africans, monolithically? There may be an issue here, of this there is small doubt. But it did not have to be addressed in the context of the proposed orphanage.
I am looking forward to the coming of Bishop McKenzie and I pray that she truely will make a difference. If she sustains the energy she brought to Payne Memorial and the city of Baltimore, I know she will.
We as AME's must admit that we are in a serious state of denial. Endemic to the American culture is the notion of innoncence until proven guilty. We are not in denial, but accusations must be supported by factual data. Too often what we hear is allegation, innuendo, supposition. Can you bring evidence that will pass a Biblical standard?
Americans love to passify. Are you suggesting that the idea of an orphanage was pacification? Or are you suggesting that the wealth of the AME church should be redistributed equally among its constituents? Are you saying that the bishops recently assigned to African were meant to pacify you? And is this something all 300 million Americans are doing monolithically?
Honesty is the best Policy and it is God. At least we can end in agreement. :-)
-- Anonymous, September 13, 2000
Oh boy once again the African Americans don't waste a minute in giving their African brothers and sisters a piece of their imperialistic mind. Rev. Castain's idea was one born out of what I believe based on her entry is true joy that the episcopal glass ceiling has been shattered and by the Bishop's desire to make a difference not by simply being the first woman but by giving the future a chance to be the future establishing orphanages that give children the opportunity to grow and become all God would have them become. Perhaps too many men have built buildings only so the could put their name on it. But rather than focus on the name of the building let's focus on the work. When AME's get off the name game bandwagon the church will grow.
-- Anonymous, September 16, 2000
During the GenCon 2000 I saw the effect of Bishop McKenzie's miistry in her campaig material, and I silently prayed for her to be assigned to the 15th Episcopal District. My brothers and sisters, no need to fight about what is first between the hen and the egg! Whether the idea came from Americans without consulting Africans or not, is not the issue. This is just additional, and believe you me, the people from the 18th Episcopal District present their own aspirations to their prelate at the relevant opportunity. I may write may heart out against or for a name of a project, but for what purpose and who is it going to serve. It may just disinterest the founding members of that project. The idea of the African Jurisdiction does not propagate severance of ties with continental USA AME Church, but it deals inter alia with the development of indigeneous leadership and we should not unnecessarily mix and confuse issues. I was tasked by the Namibia Annual Conference to draft the presentation of the Namibia Position Paper which I presented at the 1st Pan African AME Summit in South Africa, and I have had the priviledge to follow and participate in these discussions during GenCon 2000, and I am really disappointed by people abusing the concept and spirit of the Africa Jurisdictional Conference for their own personal and private reasons. The AME Church is one, and I am proud to be led by Bishop Gregory G M Ingram. I was recently blessed to be in his presence during the Millennium Session of the Namibia Annual Conference that was held from 5-10 September 2000 at Bethel Memorial AME Church. Bishop Ingram did not impose any idea, programme or project on our Conference, and he was very resourceful in sharing alternative views on how we could approach the many concerns and challenges we face. Bishop Ingram was very fatherly and compassionate, and many a member was personally and privately counselled. The 15th Episcopal District Planning Meeting is only to meet in either December or January (precise date and venue unknown at the time of our conference since the bishop had arrived in his district only 3 days prior to our conference), and only than will we know in which direction the Ingram-style will lead us. I would advise the initiaters of this McKenzie Love Centre to go ahead, and if the Bishop V M McKenzie agrees to it, she will present it to her district and that is their own business. I am only interested as long as it will bless many orphanaged children in Africa.
-- Anonymous, September 23, 2000
Rev. Hanse, I thank you for your contribution to this thread. In the light of tensions across the oceans, it is delightful to hear both of the respect the 15th has for Bishop Ming (expressed in another thread), and of the apparently successful initial appearance of Bishop Ingram. I agree with you that through it all the orphanage must prevail,a dn I pray that Bishop McKenzie will be prayerfully sensitive to the naming issue.
We pray also for the work of the Namibia Conference, and I will certainly mention once again to my pastor the concept of partnering with a church inthe 15th District.
Brothers and sisters, there may be hope yet that All God's Children can get together. Blessings to you all.
-- Anonymous, September 23, 2000
Surely, there is a need for an orphanage to be built to house thousands of children who've lost the parents as a result of HIV/AIDS. That is an undisputable fact. Let the initiative go ahead.
One thing I know; we, in Africa, never proposed severing ties with our brothers and sisters in the USA. I absolutely agree with my brother, Rev. Hanse. Africa Jurisdictional Council is a call to the entire Church to provide space and time to enable the constituency of the Church on the continent of Africa to prepare the ground for leadership in the Church.
Sister Castain, and your colleagues in this endeavour, do not be discouraged. Should it be that your endeavour has the nodding of Bishop McKenzie and the 18th District, let it be.
I am confident that Bishop McKenzie will discuss the needs of the district with the people of the district.
-- Anonymous, October 24, 2000