Rev. Dean Snyder Defends Rev. Wright

Former Metho-o-blogger, Rev. Dean Snyder, has posted a profound statement of support for Rev. Jeremiah Wright in light of the widespread media criticism of Barack Obama's former pastor.

Making the statement even more significant is the fact that President Clinton and Hillary Clinton frequently attended Rev. Snyder's Foundry United Methodist Church while they were in the White House.

Here are Rev. Snyder's comments in their entirety:

The Reverend Jeremiah Wright is an outstanding church leader whom I have heard speak a number of times. He has served for decades as a profound voice for justice and inclusion in our society. He has been a vocal critic of the racism, sexism and homophobia which still tarnish the American dream. 

To evaluate his dynamic ministry on the basis of two or three sound bites does a grave injustice to Dr. Wright, the members of his congregation, and the African-American church which has been the spiritual refuge of a people that has suffered from discrimination, disadvantage, and violence. Dr. Wright, a member of an integrated denomination, has been an agent of racial reconciliation while proclaiming perceptions and truths uncomfortable for some white people to hear. 

Those of us who are white Americans would do well to listen carefully to Dr. Wright rather than to use a few of his quotes to polarize. This is a critical time in America's history as we seek to repent of our racism. 

No matter which candidates prevail, let us use this time to listen again to one another and not to distort one another's truth.

Dean J. Snyder, Senior Minister 
Foundry United Methodist Church 
March 19, 2008 

I've been a long-time fan of Rev. Snyder for his wisdom on many issues of reconciliation for our church (and also because he shares his name with my father-in-law, and Jonah's namesake, Dean Snyder).  

He is a courageous voice, and I think his comments may have a profound effect on moving us beyond the current "gotcha" style coverage of this issue, which has focused on provocative statements and sensationalism rather than an authentic discussion of the underlying issues.

Thank you Dean.  Once again your prophetic voice is a powerful voice of truth, which is so desperately needed in these trying times.