MH News April 8, 2021

Two deaths to report today, with great sadness. Dr. Kimberly Credit, pastor of the Mount Zion Baptist Church of Boonton Township in the greater Newark metropolitan area. It was sudden, and no cause of death has been released. Dr. Credit was widely known in preaching circles around the country, especially the Academy of Preachers. And in Tubingen, Germany, a great theologian has died. Hans Kung, a priest of the Roman Catholic Church, of Swiss nationality, died after a long and rich life. He was the author of 50 books and countless articles, speeches, and sermons. He challenged the Vatican on many fronts; and many critics said he was more Protestant than Catholic. He was 93.


The Baptists defeated the Catholics in Indianapolis on Monday night. It was the national championship of collegiate basketball. Baylor University of Texas defeated Gonzaga University of Washington; both playing for their very first national title. Baylor is a Baptist-connected school, and Gonzaga is a Catholic-related school, founded and run by the Jesuits. It was only the second title won by a Texas team, the first being Texas Western who, in 1966, defeated Kentucky for the title. Baylor had earlier lost to Kentucky in the 1948 national title game.


A federal judge ruled that Wayne State University violated the constitutional rights of Intervarsity Christian Fellowship when, in 2017, it suspended the organization because the organization restricted which students at the university could be officers in the organization. The school rescinded its decision almost immediately, but the organization sued for $1 in damages. In another case, a class action suit has been filed pitting LGBTQ students across the country against the Christian schools they are attending, claiming broad patterns of discrimination. It was filed in federal court because so many of the schools participate in federal student aid programs.


A team of social scientists reviewed data about inter-racial churches reported over a 20-year period by conferences of the United Methodist Church. The findings include: more racially diverse United Methodist congregations experience higher attendance; churches located in all-white neighborhoods had more people attending worship services than Methodist churches in racially mixed or predominantly non-white neighborhoods; and worship attendance was highest for racially diverse United Methodist churches in all-white neighborhoods and in racially uniform neighborhoods.


The pandemic struck Metropolitan Baptist Church and all public services were cancelled. But that did not keep one member from staying with her routine. Dr. Laverne Wimberly is a retired teacher, principal, school administrator, and avid church goer; she is also 82 years old. Every Sunday during the pandemic, she dressed up, complete with stylish hats, to sit in her home and watch the services on-line. Her 52-week routine made national news and inspired many people. “As soon as the health officials and the scientists give us the green light that everything will be safe, I’ll probably be the first one in the door,” Wimberly said.