What are you gonna do? How many sermons can you preach on tithing? The people don't have any money, and you can see the "I'm sick of this shit" look on their faces. So what did my mother do? She opened up a food drive to feed the people. That's was nice..but I knew that the "powers that be" could care less about feeding their flock. It would not be long before they began to threaten my mother. "Either raise the money,or I'll put somebody in their who will." and "If you can't pay the budget, then hand in your appointment." were just a few of the ultimatums thrown in my mothers face. Nevermind that she spent over ten years building up the church, serving. Nevermind her dedication to what she believed in. It doesn't matter that my folks almost lost everything...noooo nevermind that. If she couldn't get the job done ( pimping the poor people for their money), then she was useless in their eyes. So what did they do? I'll tell you what they did. They pissed her off!
She didn't have any money, the members didn't have any money. "We don't have the money, but the Bishop, the Presiding Elder, they said pay it or else." "What are we gonna do?" "Let's Martin Luther their ass!" That's right she, along with a faithful few, decided that if being a member of the A.M.E. Church INC. (Yes I said that :-) ) means giving them money that they didn't have at the expense of their lives (I thought Jesus paid it all? :-) ), then it is not worth being a member and they decided to pull out. My mother learned that the church belonged to the members, and not the Church Corporation. She realized that she was being pimped, the members were being hustled, and the church was only interested in finances. So she felt it only rational, that she liberate herself, as well as her members. She was with it, and they, the members, were with it... so she thought.
Harriet Tubman once said that she could've freed more slaves, if only they Knew they were slaves. If there is one thing you can count on in any revolution, its the Judas Factor. Yea there were some that were really with it, however there were some that saw it as an oppurtunity to dispose of the preacher they've hated for so long. This was their chance. So of course they snitched. Word got out to the big house as to why mom wasn't returning any phone calls, and that's when the stuff hit the fan.
First, the Presiding Elder came to my folks house, and told her straight up, "you can leave, but you can't take my slaves with you." Then they started showing up at the church. As a matter of fact, everyone started showing up. People that had not been there in years, that left the church out of dislike of "Pastor Amedee," suddenly popped back up on the scene. Soon the nea's out weighed the yea's, and the church was divided. Some of those that she thought had her back, backed down in face of the pressure. Lawyers were brought into the equation, which only made things worse. Things reach their peak when it happened...these negroes got to fightin' in the chuuuch!
It got so bad the police began to show up for church. They begin to sit at the corner, section off the block, ready to take someone to jail. They didn't know my folks were from the N.O.(New Orleans..baby keep up!..lol) so it was all good. But when things got too ugly, and my mom realized that she was fighting without her corner, she reluctantly bowed out.
The whole time all this is going on I'm off in Louisville with my wife, doing my thing. I of course, did not think that it was worth the fight. Afterall, I wasn't in church, and I wasn't buying what they were selling. So I recommended she cease fighting for those who won't fight for themselves. There is an Ancient Egyptian proverb that states "Leave him in error, who loves his error." That was/is my way. However, mom is a fighter and she wasn't going out without a fight. So she fought to the bitter end. Did she win? Some say no, but I think she did.
She may not be a Pastor anymore with a big church, but she learned a lesson worth far more. She realized the game that is organized religion. She realized that she was fighting in vain. She realized that the institution that she gave her all to, was only interested in taking more than that. But after more than 20 years in the ministry, what was she going to do? I didn't know, I was only happy that she learned her lesson..I think..she learned her lesson. Did she learn her lesson?...and then she said it... "I gotta get my head together." Sweet.
She's still on her journey, but what she did, is now being echoed throughout the world of religion, as week after week we hear about another church pulling out of they're disrespective organization (yes I know I said disrespective). This is only the beginning. It is not enough for you to free your pocket book. You must free yourself, your mind. I'm not telling you to throw away your book, just your lying preacher, and his misinterpretation of it. Why do you believe in that? You Are THAT...
To Be Continued....
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