Black Pastor Wants “Only White People” at Front Door

What do you do when you’re the pastor of a black church in the bible belt when you think your church has become too black? Well, you do what Pastor Makeda Pennycooke of Freedom House Church did. That would be, you’d circulate an email to members of your congregation expressing your concern. And of course as a solution, you suggest to them that you would like to have “only white people,” at the front door to your church to act as greeters. It’s an idea that’s become a source of controversy for some, but I think it’s an excellent idea.

Why? Because everybody knows the only time white folks are interested in worship and fellowship is when there’s a white face to greet them. You know, because a black church isn’t quite safe without the smiling faces of white people at the front door. You know, sort of like how they do at Walmart? Exactly. Why else would anyone white decide to step foot in a black church to spend good money worship the lord if there’s a black face at the door? I guess Martin Luther King Jr. was not wrong when he once said that the most segregated hour in America is on a Sunday morning. Thankfully, however, there is at least one pastor with a brilliant idea and is doing something about it.

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) – Controversy has sparked at a north Charlotte church after a pastor sent an email asking that “only white people” stand at the front door to greet the congregation.

A viewer contacted WBTV after getting an email from Pastor Makeda Pennycooke, an African-American woman, at Freedom House Church along Salome Church Road.

The email was sent to a group of church volunteers who act as greeters for the church’s 9 a.m. service.

Carmen Thomas, who has attended and served at the church for the past two years, sent us the email. She was appalled.

“I was floored,” she recalled. “Like it was a jaw dropper. You can put a white face all over the front door. But when you come through those doors, you’re going to see African Americans, you’re gonna see Asians. You’re going to see people of color.”

Pastor Makeda Pennycooke
Pastor Makeda Pennycooke

In the email, Pastor Pennycooke reminds volunteers that fall is one of the busiest times of year for the church.

“We anticipate having an increase in the number of people visiting and attending Freedom House over the next few weeks,” Pastor Pennycooke says in the email.

She then says that “first impressions matter” and says the church wants “the best of the best on the front doors.”

“We are continuing to work to bring our racial demographic pendulum back to mid-line,” she continued in the email. “So we would like to ask that only white people be on the front doors.”

Thomas told WBTV she knew exactly what Pastor Pennycooke meant by that statement.

“Too black,” she said. “It wasn’t a conclusion that I drew. It was something I read.”

Pennycooke then acknowledges the request is a “sensitive situation” and said quality trumps quantity. (source)

Quality over quantity, huh? Pastor Pennycooke also wrote in her email, “We would rather have less greeters on the front door if it means that the few that we have will represent us the best.” Yes, because clearly black faces or black people aren’t good enough. But then again, maybe they are considering the fact that an apology was issued to some people from Pastor Pennycooke and Senior Pastors Troy and Penny Maxwell.

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