Wright Takes Cross Over Racial Divide

Rebel preacher aims to free gospel from 'whiteness'
By Jonas Oransky,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 6, 2008 8:39 PM CDT
Wright Takes Cross Over Racial Divide
Illinois Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Barack Obama, right, holds hands with church members and prays during services at Trinity United Church of Christ.   (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh, File)

Barack Obama pastor Jeremiah Wright built his Chicago church on black liberation theology, which directs Christianity at African Americans, Kelefa Sanneh writes in the New Yorker. The movement’s founder aimed to “emancipate the gospel from its ‘whiteness,’” but also from Frederick Douglass’ belief that antebellum America had profoundly perverted Christianity.

In a profile of Trinity United's “rebel preacher," Sanneh touches on Wright's time in the political spotlight. "The hints of modern-day crucifixion may have been, in part, Holy Week hyperbole," Sanneh writes. "But there’s no denying the intensity of the media barrage. In a bipartisan display of umbrage, commentators on television and online have largely agreed that Wright is nutty, or insane, or worse." (More Barack Obama stories.)

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