After I’ve read Peter’s thoughts over at Gentle Wisdom about Wright, this particular article in the Chicago Tribune really struck me.
Examining the full content of Wright’s sermons and delivery style yields a far more complex message, though it’s one that some will still find objectionable. For more than 30 years every Sunday, Wright walked churchgoers along a winding road from rage to reconciliation, employing a style that validated both. “He’s voicing a reality that those people experience six days a week,” said Rev. Dwight Hopkins, a professor at the University of Chicago Divinity School and Trinity member. “In that sense, he’s saying they’re not insane. That helps them to function the other six days of the week.”
The article is definitely worth reading in full and makes you realize that Wright is better than the new outlets have made him. Between the transcript of his full sermon, which Peter linked to in the blog post noted above, and this article, it seems like critics have done an amazing job taking Wright’s words out of context as much as possible! I still don’t know how I feel about Wright’s message as a whole and Dr. Winfred Neely’s words in the article resonate with me well:
“I don’t think some of the critiques were offered in love for people,” Neely said. “I think they were born of his own personal anger . . . and not necessarily a critique coming out of a heartbroken pain over the fact that God is being dishonored by what is going on in society and culture.”
Do go it a read. The article as a whole provides a very balanced perspective, I think, of both the positives and negatives of Wright’s preaching and message.