VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS 5/2/12)—In his latest video—titled “Has the church changed since Rodney King?”—Dr. Aidsand F. Wright-Riggins III, executive director of American Baptist Home Mission Societies (ABHMS), remembers the 1992 Los Angeles Riots, which erupted 20 years ago this past Sunday, April 29.
“If Los Angeles can be referred to or thought of as a ‘Jericho Road,’” says Wright-Riggins, persons there were basically saying, ‘It’s not enough simply to minister to people on the Jericho Road, but we’ve got to repair it. We’ve got to repair it through acts of discipleship and community and through justice.’”
In “Has the church changed since Rodney King?”, Wright-Riggins invites viewing of another video—titled “A Roadside View of the Church”—which was recorded by ABHMS in Los Angeles at the time of the riots.
Says Wright-Riggins, “The question that I ask of you is: How much has changed? And how much has the church equipped itself to minister to those persons on the Jericho Road? And, more importantly, how have we been set apart to engage in repairing it?”
He urges viewers to respond by posting comments on ABHMS’ Facebook page.
The riots began after four Los Angeles police officers were acquitted of beating Rodney King, an unarmed African-American. Looting, destruction, injuries and killings occurred over several days before the military was ordered to intervene.
Visit www.abhms.org and click on “Has the church changed since Rodney King?” in the slideshow. You will be taken to the Executive Director’s page, where both videos can be viewed. To comment, click a link to Facebook beneath the videos or visit www.facebook.com and search for “American Baptist Home Mission Societies.”
ABHMS—the domestic mission arm of American Baptist Churches USA (ABCUSA)—ministers as the caring heart and serving hands of Jesus Christ across the United States and Puerto Rico through a multitude of initiatives that focus on discipleship, community and justice.
ABCUSA is one of the most diverse Christian denominations today, with 5,500 local congregations comprised of 1.3 million members, across the United States and Puerto Rico, all engaged in God’s mission around the world.