76 Percent of American Pastors Support Peaceful Protests, Barna Finds

Amanda Casanova | ChristianHeadlines.com Contributor | Wednesday, June 17, 2020
76 Percent of American Pastors Support Peaceful Protests, Barna Finds

76 Percent of American Pastors Support Peaceful Protests, Barna Finds


A Barna Group study says that more than three-quarters of American pastors support peaceful protests like the ones taking place all across the country.

The demonstrations come after the death of George Floyd, a black man who died after a white police officer pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck.

The study surveyed some 400 pastors, the Christian Post reports.

The survey showed that 76 percent believe churches should support the protest. Fifteen percent disagreed, and 8 percent said they had no opinion on the issue.

“Church leaders are actively leaning in on conversations about racism in America in a way that they haven't in the past,” Barna President David Kinnaman told The Christian Post.

“It may surprise some, but it did not surprise me that 76% of church leaders believe the church should support peaceful protests or demonstrations happening across the nation,” Kinnaman said.

About 62 percent also said they believe the churches had addressed the protests. A staggering 94 percent said they believe the church has a responsibility to publicly denounce racism.

“We saw in The Mercy Journey two years ago that 70% of pastors believed that the church should respond in some way – lament, repent, repair the damage – to the historic mistreatment of African Americans, and this moment has given them more clarity about how to engage.

“What the church seems to have been convinced of in recent weeks is that this is more of a widespread problem, and they are being called to take a more proactive, bold stance toward racial justice,” he added.

Since the protests, church leaders across the country have released statements condemning racism. Earlier this week, some 24 evangelical scholars released a statement saying racism is “contrary to Scripture and to the evangelical gospel.”

“Scripture does not discriminate by color, and, on the most common understanding of Acts 8, the first Gentile convert may have been Black and from Africa,” the statement read.

A Barna Group study says that more than three-quarters of American pastors support peaceful protests like the ones taking place all across the country.

The demonstrations come after the death of George Floyd, a black man who died after a white police officer pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck.

The study surveyed some 400 pastors.

The survey showed that 76 percent believe churches should support the protest. Fifteen percent disagreed, and 8 percent said they had no opinion on the issue.

“Church leaders are actively leaning in on conversations about racism in America in a way that they haven't in the past,” Barna President David Kinnaman told The Christian Post.

“It may surprise some, but it did not surprise me that 76 percent of church leaders believe the church should support peaceful protests or demonstrations happening across the nation,” Kinnaman said.

About 62 percent also said they believe the churches had addressed the protests. A staggering 94 percent said they believe the church has a responsibility to publicly denounce racism.

“We saw in The Mercy Journey two years ago that 70 percent of pastors believed that the church should respond in some way – lament, repent, repair the damage – to the historic mistreatment of African Americans, and this moment has given them more clarity about how to engage.

“What the church seems to have been convinced of in recent weeks is that this is more of a widespread problem, and they are being called to take a more proactive, bold stance toward racial justice,” he added.

Since the protests, church leaders across the country have released statements condemning racism. Earlier this week, some 24 evangelical scholars released a statement saying racism is “contrary to Scripture and to the evangelical gospel.”

“Scripture does not discriminate by color, and, on the most common understanding of Acts 8, the first Gentile convert may have been Black and from Africa,” the statement read.

Photo courtesy: ©Thinkstock


Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.

 

Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Texas with her husband. Previously, she worked for the Galveston County Daily News, the Houston Chronicle, the Abilene Reporter-News and the Lufkin Daily News. Currently, she is a team member for HeartSupport, a nonprofit community for young adults. Her website is at http://tx.ag/casanova and you can find her on Twitter @acasanova10.