Some Christians Upset About Prayer Book Including Black Woman’s Prayer to ‘Hate White People’

Hello World,

First of all, peace to the family, friends and loved ones of rapper DMX and Prince Philip, who both passed on Friday. However, as an American and as DMX is in my generation, I must admit I feel more connected to the life and times of DMX. I hate that he lost his life to his addiction, and my prayer is that all who find themselves addicted to something will reach out to the hand of God who is always willing to break those chains of addiction if we first admit we need that help and cannot do it alone.

Alright, now on to the controversy, chile. A prayer crafted by Dr. Chanequa Walker-Barnes is causing an uproar! Dr. Walker-Barnes, a professor of practical theology at Mercer University, wrote “Prayer of a Weary Black Woman,” which is included in A Rhythm of Prayer: A Collection of Meditations for Renewal by Sarah Bessey, who is the editor of the New York Times bestseller. Below is the description of the book.

For the weary, the angry, the anxious, and the hopeful, this collection of moving, tender prayers offers rest, joyful resistance, and a call to act, written by Barbara Brown Taylor, Amena Brown, Nadia Bolz-Weber, and other artists and thinkers, curated by the author Glennon Doyle calls “my favorite faith writer.”

It’s no secret that we are overworked, overpressured, and edging burnout. Unsurprisingly, this fact is as old as time—and that’s why we see so many prayer circles within a multitude of church traditions. These gatherings are a trusted space where people seek help, hope, and peace, energized by God and one another.

This book, curated by acclaimed author Sarah Bessey, celebrates and honors that prayerful tradition in a literary form. A companion for all who feel the immense joys and challenges of the journey of faith, this collection of prayers says it all aloud, giving readers permission to recognize the weight of all they carry. These writings also offer a broadened imagination of hope—of what can be restored and made new. Each prayer is an original piece of writing, with new essays by Sarah Bessey throughout.

Encompassing the full breadth of the emotional landscape, these deeply tender yet subversive prayers give readers an intimate look at the diverse language and shapes of prayer.

And below is the beginning of the prayer:

“My prayer is that you would help me hate the other White people – you know, the nice ones. The Fox News-loving, Trump-supporting voters who ‘don’t see color’ but who make thinly-veiled racist comments about ‘those people.’ The people who are happy to have me over for dinner but alert the neighborhood watch anytime an unrecognized person of color passes their house. The people who welcome Black people in their churches and small groups but brand us heretics if we suggest that Christianity is concerned with the poor and the oppressed. The people who politely tell us that we can leave we we call out the racial microaggressions we experience in their ministries.”

This is what Rod Dreher wrote about “Prayer of a Weary Black Woman” in his response entitled on “A Rhythm Of Racist Prayer” on The American Conservative.

My, my, we have come a long way from Dr. King, haven’t we?…

How the hell did the people at Convergent Books, an imprint of Penguin Random House, approve this? Is racial hatred fine by them if it’s directed at white people? Apparently so. I’ve read a couple of reviews of A Rhythm of Prayer, and not one of them have expressed surprise or alarm that Walker-Barnes prays for God to help her hate white people, and asking God to help her see them all as Klansmen. Not one. Walker-Barnes would not have written such a blasphemous, hateful, racist prayer if she thought she would face any sanction for it from her university, or within her professional milieu.

My conclusion is that the woke establishment is completely on board with stoking anti-white hatred.

Read the rest HERE.

And here is Dr. Walker-Barnes’ response to her critics via Twitter.

Dr. Walker-Barnes explains further on her blog Here’s an excerpt:

Let me share a bit of background about the prayer. I wrote it in a heated moment. A White person – someone whom I would have called a friend – dropped the N-word in a casual conversation. Notice that I didn’t write it out. That’s because I don’t. I don’t say it either, especially not with a hard -er. The word is traumatic for me. I am a lifelong southerner who is only one generation removed from sharecropping. My family history is full of racial trauma. When my paternal grandfather was 7, he and his father ran away from the White South Carolina farmer for whom they sharecropped. This would have been around 1915, fifty years after the end of slavery, and they had to escape under the cover of darkness because sharecropping was just another form of slavery.

Later, his family would be the second Black family to move onto his street; his children would integrate their high schools, putting their educations in the hands of racist White teachers who did not honor their potential. And that’s just one side of my family; my maternal side has similar stories, including the murder of a family member who was a civil rights activist. The N-word is not a word we use because it is a word that comes with memory, painful and traumatic memory.

Read the rest HERE.

But not everyone is as upset as Rod Dreher. Here is what Amy Julia Becker wrote in “A white woman’s response to the ‘Prayer of a Weary Black Woman’” for Religion New Service.

Dreher’s post is only worth reading as an example of a kind of knee-jerk reaction that demonizes rather than engages. Of course, in this case, Dreher, a Christian, is demonizing a fellow Christian, which makes it all the more awful. He misses the point and purpose of the prayer — a call to persevere in love — entirely.

Walker-Barnes wrote in the prayer she isn’t asking for help hating the really, really racist ones, the Ku Klux Klan members and neo-Nazis. And she doesn’t want to hate the ones who are allied with the cause of justice.

No, she explains, she wants to hate the “nice White people.” The ones who would have her over for dinner but feel squeamish about Black Lives Matter. Or the white progressives who have read enough books to sound like they understand and care about vague concepts like racial justice but who actually undermine the cause.

Read the rest HERE.

What do you think? Is “Prayer of a Weary Black Woman” right on or racist?

Any thoughts?




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One thought on “Some Christians Upset About Prayer Book Including Black Woman’s Prayer to ‘Hate White People’

  1. When one understands from her prayer that she is not praying to hate all white people, that she currently loves the people whom she is praying to hate, that she is in anguish because of the expressed racism of those whites who portray themselves as anti-racists and thus she is praying for an end to this particular part of her inner pain and suffering, that the immediate and long-range contexts makes wanting to hate certain groups of people understandable, then one is compelled to see her prayer as not being racist.

    Rather, her prayer, with its good and bad points, is a response to a constant and deep racism that most of us are blind to or could never adequately understand. And those of us who can’t understand that racism with its effects fail to understand it because we haven’t been targeted by it.