Last night I went to an event called “Bless Richmond,” mostly because it seemed so consistent with First Baptist Church’s year-long, every-member mission to bring the Kingdom of Heaven to Richmond, Virginia. It was held at U-Turn, a sports facility that used to be a Circuit City warehouse, but last night housed hundreds—perhaps even thousands—of Richmond Christians who had come together to bless their city.
The most remarkable thing about the gathering—apart from the high-energy worship—was the fact that black people and white people came together, united by their love for Jesus and their love for Richmond. The idea that that’s remarkable is, in itself, remarkable, but here—nearly 50 years after the Civil Rights Act was signed into law, it is.
It says something about how deep the divisions in our city have been, and how much work still needs to be done. But last night, as we were praying for Richmond, Ben Campbell prayed that what has been known as the “Capital of the Confederacy” would become known as the “Capital of Reconciliation.” I think that’s the sort of thing that would make Jesus glad, and the sort of thing that would, indeed,
Photo by Linda Moore, whose other pictures of the event can be seen by clicking HERE.
See my shaky, hand-held YouTube video by clicking HERE
A Christianity Today feature on Richmond as one of six cities in America where Christians are making a difference. Take a look by clicking HERE.
UPDATE: The “Bless Richmond” event collected 13,157 pounds of food, $8,237.76 in contributions, and 54,346 meals. That’s a blessing!