Tuesday, April 23, 2024

‘Save the Black Family, Now!’

July 23, 2007 by  
Filed under Health, News, Weekly Columns

(Akiit.com) We must develop the character, creativity, consciousness, competence and compassion to save, strengthen and sustain the black family in particular, and all families in general.

Our families need real solutions and real transformation. Now is the time for our black leadership to restore and rebuild black families. You don’t have to be a social analyst, a psychiatrist, a social worker, a theologian or a palm reader to see that our families are in real trouble. The appalling and widespread acceptance of the pervasive degradation of our mothers, wives and daughters must be holistically and strategically addressed in every family, in every church, in every community, and in every state.

Unfortunately, our faith-based community has turned its collective face from the cultural debacle that is currently destroying our black families: the alarmingly high divorce rate; the surge of teenage pregnancies; the escalation of murders among our young people; the incredible increase in illiteracy; and the disgraceful and lurid music that now saturates the airways.

Now is the time to reclaim our children, strengthen our families and gird our communities with the moral fiber that will positively transform this nation. We must unilaterally challenge and reject the types of music, lyrics, and materials that defame, degrade and belittle black women and undermine the wellness and wholeness of the black family.

You cannot make it these days when the family structure, family values and family unity are broken, dying, fractured and troubled. The key to a strong race, a strong nation, a strong community and a strong church is the family.

There is power in the family, the family structure, and family unity. So goes the family, so goes the black race. It is about the family because it is a family affair. We need godly family reunions across America.

We must be very clear and committed to the up-building of all families: single families, married couples, the elderly, the widow, the widower, the divorcees. We can’t afford to leave any family member behind. This family business is not a social problem; this family breakdown is not simply an economic problem; it is not even a white man’s problem; it is our problem, and this is a spiritual matter.

In my annual message as president of the National Baptist Congress of Christian Education, we prayerfully presented a framework designed to help our communities build capacity and develop the necessary infrastructure to save and strengthen black families across America.

The “Save the Black Family, Now!” movement will bring together educators, service organizations, businesses, clergy, married couples and singles in strategic planning and collaborative partnerships across America.

The following measurable goals for saving our families will be achieved by 2015:

    Reduce the rate of divorces in the black family by 25 percent.

    Reduce the number of teenage pregnancies in the black community by 25 percent.

    Reduce the rate of black-on-black murders by 25 percent.

    Reduce the high incidence of the HIV AIDS virus by 25 percent.

    Reject black music, lyrics, and materials that defame, degrade and belittle black women and undermine the wellness and wholeness of the black family.

I encourage all committed pastors and thought leaders to join us in the “Save the Black Family, Now!” movement. We must create sound family-based ministries in our local churches and communities. Our voices will no longer be silent!

By R.B. Holmes Jr.

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