This chapter shifts attention from the church’s outreach efforts to another dimension of its internal workings—how it handles romantic relationships among church members. In particular, tensions have arisen over interracial romantic relationships. Many in the congregation perceive the pastoral staff as discouraging such relationships, if not always explicitly. One result is a regular meeting of couples involved in these relationships in settings outside the church, and hiding their relationships from other church members and the staff. The ambivalence about interracial romance becomes a good setting in which to understand the congregation’s overall ambivalence about dealing with issues of race and racial inequality forthrightly.
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