I haven't had the surprise and fear many white Americans have felt from the sermons by Barack Obama's minister. I also realize I have academic training that prepares me to hear a message coming out of liberation theology, particularly black liberation theology. I was going to give some basics explaining this theology, but I found a lecture online from a local professor that explains it far better than I could. It doesn't take long to read - I hope you'll make the time to learn about something so important and crucial.
And I'd like to say another word about not agreeing with someone you love. My brother and I don't discuss politics on a deep level - we need to stick to television reruns. I love him - he will always be my family. But I know he would not understand why Sonny Boy and I stood in the wind and rain for an hour and a half last night protesting the war in Iraq. And that's fine. My brother is a good person and I respect him even if we don't agree on politics.
And as a minister, I would also like to say that I would be fearful if I had a parishioner who totally agreed with everything I ever said in a sermon. I hope my sermons will provoke thought and faith development - but we are all unique people and need to think for ourselves. A minister is a spiritual advisor, not a cult leader who insists on complete uniformity.