Let Clarkston Be Heard!

October 2, 2018 @ 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm America/New York Timezone
Clarkston City Hall

Please support Clarkston residents by showing up to Clarkston’s city council meeting on Tuesday, October 2, 2018 at 7:00pm.
Support the right of residents to speak for themselves!!
Wear something purple for unity.

After over a year of secrecy, it has been revealed that the North American Mission Board (NAMB) has been planning a $15 million dollar development in Clarkston, GA. NAMB is the domestic missions agency of the Southern Baptist Convention. A recent article https://on-ajc.com/2O5Rr4y in the AJC states, “City officials kept it quiet, never mentioning demolition permits or any details about the plans, residents say.”

It is unjust to speak for people and tell them what will help/benefit them. Let people decide for themselves what benefits them and their families. Transparency about what is happening in one’s own community is essential for democracy.



The article ( https://on-ajc.com/2O5Rr4y ) continues that Mayor Ted Terry said he thought the proposal was not necessarily serious, so he didn’t need to go public. ‘I asked (church officials) to have a public hearing before they act,’ Terry said. ‘They admitted they screwed up. They should have done this months ago before they started demolishing things.’”

Terry has also claimed that “he smells xenophobia and white privilege in the opposition…I didn’t see too many young families opposing the plan. Preserve our neighborhood is code words for we don’t want those people near us. People say the Southern Baptist Convention is bigots, racists, anti-gay. I understand that feeling. But he called the religious organization handling the effort, a group called Send Relief, “the more charitable, open-minded wing of the Baptist tent.” Terry described how anti-Baptist bias might be fueling the opposition: “There’s a new mosque being built around the corner. It’s interesting that no neighbors were knocking on doors asking that it not be built….There’s a coalition that’s emerged…There’s my Bernie Sanders friends saying, ‘We don’t want them converting refugees.’ And others are saying, ‘We don’t want them in our backyard.’ It’s an odd bedfellows thing here.”

“One of my dreams is for every Muslim, Hindu and Buddhist to have a Christian friend who can point them toward Christ,” stated Trent DeLoach, Clarkston International Bible Church’s senior pastor and director of the Send Relief ministry hub. “Most refugees have significant physical and emotional needs. They need Christian friends who can share the love of Jesus while helping them transition to life in America.”

By living next door to families with diverse cultural backgrounds, Elizabeth (DeLoach’s wife) says they have opportunities to influence the nations. “These people are still connected to home,” she said, explaining that many are from remote villages that would be difficult for missionaries to access. “You’re able to make a wider impact as you reach these families.” (https://bit.ly/2CUui4a)

Some context of why Terry said, “people say the Southern Baptist Convention is bigots, racists, and anti gay”:
They first separated from the Baptists over slavery, including the belief that slave owners could be missionaries. “In 1995, the convention voted to adopt a resolution renouncing its racist roots and apologizing for its past defense of slavery, segregation, and white supremacy.” (https://bit.ly/2CHAcFz)

According to the Human Rights Campaign, “In 2017, top leaders of the SBC joined other evangelical leaders in a statement Aug. 29 denouncing LGBTQ people and their identities as “inconsistent with God’s holy purposes in creation and redemption.”

“Our ultimate vision is to be a multi-ethnic, spirit-filled church family where all people can come to know, experience, and serve Jesus Christ.”- Send Relief

“Refugees and internationals come to North America seeking security, opportunity and home. Often, they enter the country unable to speak, read or understand the language. They come with tremendous dreams, but their needs leave them vulnerable to manipulation and abuse. You can and your church can protect them and help them adapt through international support and genuine friendship.”

According to the Pew Research Center (https://pewrsr.ch/1Yr2TZ3) in 2014 the Southern Baptist Convention consisted of:
85% White
6% Black
<1% Asian
3% Latino
5% Other/Mixed

2% Immigrants
2% Second generation
96% Third generation or higher

Clarkston consists of:
9% White
59% Black
25% Asian
5% Hispanic
2% Mixed

(These were the race categories listed)

David Melber NAMB is the Vice President for Send Relief, which is overseeing the partnership of NAMB and Clarkston International Bible Church. He stated, “We get a lot of calls from churches requesting missions exposure to different mercy/compassion ministries. We want to provide that through such ventures that we are proposing with the Georgia site. We hope to use each of these as distinctive examples from which congregations nationwide can choose to visit and study and then make practical application when they return home. For example, Clarkston will serve as a multicultural urban setting with refugees and immigrants while Ashland will serve for a more rural experience. We do not intend to restrict, but support, the local church’s ongoing outreach into its community.”

Trent DeLoach, Clarkston International Bible Church’s senior pastor and director of the Send Relief ministry hub stated, “NAMB will assume all operational costs but Clarkston International will continue to worship here as it always has. The only difference is NAMB will help us to tell our story to a wider audience. We will be able to leverage what we have learned over 40 years of ministry, of surviving a transitional community that was not easy at times, and emerging as a congregation that very closely reflects the community in which it is located.
“There will be opportunities for youth groups to experience a specific setting and for internships where individuals receive a more in-depth hands on experience.”

Send Relief partnership site:
“Many types of ministries are housed underneath the Send Relief banner including ministry focused on refugees. Send Relief is committed to equipping churches to reach out to their immediate neighborhoods. Clarkston is a unique community with unprecedented Great Commission opportunities. A ministry hub in Clarkston would provide the platform to educate other churches on the strategic opportunity to minister to refugees and other immigrant groups.”The prayer of CIBC and NAMB is for the Hub strategy to make Clarkston an even greater place to live and serve among the nations that God is bringing to North America.”

So please support Clarkston residents by showing up to Clarkston’s city council meeting on Tuesday, October 2, 2018 at 7:00pm.
Support the right of residents to speak for themselves!!
Wear something purple for unity.