Christian Chronicle

‘Worship is our protest’

In Ferguson, a predominantly black church focuses on healing its community by glorifying God.

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By Bobby Ross Jr. | The Christian Chronicle

FERGUSON, Mo. — Brian Owens feels a need to protest.

But his protest doesn’t involve waving a “hands up, don’t shoot” sign, staging a “die-in” or chanting “I can’t breathe” during a march.

“Worship is our protest,” Owens told fellow members of the predominantly black Ferguson Heights Church of Christ on a recent Sunday.

It’s the fight for hearts and souls — not the fight in the streets — that matters in “Christ’s righteous revolution,” the 34-year-old Christian said.

His comments came amid a national spotlight on high-profile police shootings of unarmed black men.

Violence that included gunfire, looting and buildings set on fire erupted Nov. 24 in this St. Louis suburb after a grand jury declined to indict officer Darren Wilson, who said he fatally shot 18-year-old Michael Brown in self-defense.

Nine days later, a New York grand jury chose not to indict police officer Daniel Pantaleo, who used a fatal choke hold on 43-year-old Eric Garner when the suspect resisted arrest.

The deaths of Brown and Garner — and similar cases nationwide — have sparked coast-to-coast demonstrations emphasizing that “black lives matter.”

Read the full story.

Related story: 50-50 split: A Ferguson-area church models racial diversity

These stories appear in the January 2015 print edition of The Christian Chronicle.

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