An Evangelical Leader’s Confession about AIDS/HIV: “How Did I Miss This?”

A MUST READ! A signifant re-intergration of our public and social faith as evangelicals has, in my opinion, been cemented by Rick Warren and Bill Hybels. Their confession for lack of response to AIDS/HIV represents the kind of leadership that will take the evangelical local church into this postmodern age. The question for us evangelicals: will we be on board with this and other social issues or not? Thanks to Todd Rhoades for pointing to this article at Monday Morning Insight. An excerpt from the news article is below:

Megachurch Pastors Express Regret, Urge Churches to Mobilize Against HIV/AIDS Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2005 Posted: 11:20:17AM EST

LAKE FOREST, Calif. – Megachurch pastors Bill Hybels and Rick Warren both expressed their deep regrets for not joining the fight against HIV/AIDS sooner as they partner to call the Church to quickly take action in the battle against one of the world’s greatest humanitarian emergencies.

Bill Hybels speaks on the change that occurred in his heart when he finally realized that AIDS victims could be his own people, his own family, or his own children. Churches drawing 20,000 or more on a weekend offer not just a vast, shared attraction but a path that tries to link individuals on a faith-sustaining one-to-one level beyond the crowd, observers and worshipers …

Bill Hybels, senior pastor of the 18,000-membered Willow Creek Church in South Barrington, Ill., and Rick Warren of the 20,000-membered Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif. both began their sessions Tuesdays with apologies for their lack of awareness and response to the pandemic that is expected to kill 93 million people by 2010.

“Willow would be on the list of churches to get it too late,” reflected Hybels. “As I look back, I take full responsibility for this. Our church just celebrated its 30th anniversary last month. I have to live with that. I confess it. I believe it is covered with the cross but it is a mystery to me why I didn’t get it.”

Similarly, Warren lamented during the opening session, “A few years ago I had to repent. How did I miss this? What were the blinders on my eyes? You can’t just care about people spiritually but you have to tend to people physically too.”

Read the rest of the article at The Christian Post news website: Megachurch Pastors Express Regret, Urge Churches to Mobilize Against HIV/AIDS.

Read this other post on my site related to this topic: Bono of U2 on Evangelicals and AIDS

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Rich Kirkpatrick

Rich Kirkpatrick

Writer, Speaker, and Musician. Rich Kirkpatrick was recently rated #13 of the “Top 75 Religion Bloggers” by Newsmax.com, having also received recognition by Worship Leader Magazine as “Editor’s Choice” for the “Best of the Best” of blogs in 2011, 2014, 2015 and 2016.

4 comments

  1. Thanks for posting on this. It’s good to see signs of a re-awakening evangelical social conscience.
    Historically, Christians have been at the forefront of so much important social action. But too often we hold back out of fear of some kind of “liberal social gospel”

    It is great when the spiritual and social come together. Thank God that these guys are willing to acknowledge their failings and move forward.

    Thanks again. Blessings

  2. Thanks for posting on this. It’s good to see signs of a re-awakening evangelical social conscience.
    Historically, Christians have been at the forefront of so much important social action. But too often we hold back out of fear of some kind of “liberal social gospel”

    It is great when the spiritual and social come together. Thank God that these guys are willing to acknowledge their failings and move forward.

    Thanks again. Blessings

  3. Thanks for posting on this. It’s good to see signs of a re-awakening evangelical social conscience.
    Historically, Christians have been at the forefront of so much important social action. But too often we hold back out of fear of some kind of “liberal social gospel”

    It is great when the spiritual and social come together. Thank God that these guys are willing to acknowledge their failings and move forward.

    Thanks again. Blessings

  4. Thanks for posting on this. It’s good to see signs of a re-awakening evangelical social conscience.
    Historically, Christians have been at the forefront of so much important social action. But too often we hold back out of fear of some kind of “liberal social gospel”

    It is great when the spiritual and social come together. Thank God that these guys are willing to acknowledge their failings and move forward.

    Thanks again. Blessings

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