Dear Bishop Charles E. Blake and the General Board of the Church of God in Christ,
The 107th Holy Convocation of the Church of God in Christ will be held from November 3-11, 2014 in St. Louis, Missouri and as a concerned progressive Christian of the millennial generation, I implore you that during this week of meetings, worship services and workshops that you lead this aggregation of people outside of the Edward Jones Dome toward the seats of governmental power in the city of Ferguson, the city of St. Louis and the state of Missouri and demand justice on behalf of the family of Michael Brown.
Growing up in the institutional Black Church, I understand that as an institution that it was instrumental in the liberation of Africans enslaved on these shores both in the visible and invisible church as well as the liberation of the descendants of these same African slaves who never experienced the emancipation of their own bodies from the bondage of white racism and chattel slavery. I also understand that the Black Church, as an institution, has held the nexus of pneumatological power from the inception of this country as well as possession of a prophetic voice that produced both a Martin Luther King and a Bishop Charles Mason, a Malcolm X and a Bishop Gilbert Patterson, a Jarena Lee and a Jacqueline McCollough, a Prathia Hall and a Gertrude Stacks, a Thomas Dorsey and a Dr. Mattie Moss Clark.
To plan a national convention that provides an economic boost to the city of St. Louis as much as $35 million in years past, but potentially miss the power of your presence to be in the city of St. Louis at such a time as this is the equivalent of Peter missing the Holy Spirit multiple times leading toward the conversion of Cornelius; to potentially ignore the plight of your own brothers and sisters a mere 12 miles away in Ferguson is tantamount to standing at the foot of cross and watching Jesus suffer not just a spiritual crucifixion, but a political lynching and say nothing–and do nothing! We sit in churches week after week and hear about our own sisters and brothers succumbing to oppressive systems of politics and education, race and religion and we do nothing–we say nothing. Bishop Blake, et. al., now is your time and your opportunity to do something about it.
The time is now to utilize the power of the Holy Ghost and the possession of the prophetic voice to turn the world upside down.
In the early church, in the book of the Acts of the Apostles, the Lukan writer recalls that as Paul and Silas were journeying through the country side, they entered Thessalonica and Paul began arguing the scriptures in the synagogue proclaiming Jesus as the Messiah. The crowds grew angry and a mob formed. This mob knew that they were residing at Jason’s house and began to hunt them down. Acts 17:6 reads that
“When they could not find them, they dragged Jason and some believers before the city authorities, shouting, “These people who have been turning the world upside down have come here also.'”
My challenge to Bishop Blake and to the General Board of the Church of God in Christ is that if your presence in St. Louis does not “turn the world upside down” then indeed you are not embodying the spirit of power, but one of fear. What would happen if 35,000 black, Holy Ghost-filled members walked out of the Edward Jones Dome and marched on the streets of Ferguson demanding (1) that the policing tactics of Ferguson Police Department be immediately reviewed and the police chief be immediately removed from office? What would happen if 35,000 tongue-talking members walked to the city hall of St. Louis and (2) demand that the city of St. Louis pass an ordinance that all St. Louis police officers must wear cameras to record their actions and the actions of citizens? What would happen if 35,000 foot-stomping, hand-clapping, fire-baptized members marched to the capital Jefferson City, Missouri and demanded (3) that the Missouri state legislature and Gov. Jay Nixon sign into law that the burden of proof is lowered severely for a grand jury indictment of a police officer who shoots an unarmed citizen?
If black, Holy Ghost-filled, tongue-talking, foot-stomping, hand-clapping, fire-baptized Christians of the Church of God in Christ aren’t turning the world upside down, then I question just how compliant and complicit you are in the systems of this world that maintain and contain the oppression of the people that look just like you in the mirror.
What’s the point of having all that power, but no voice to use it?
The Church of God in Christ has historically been willing workers in the commitment to building a better world for all of humanity, but especially for blacks in America. While local pastors and churches of the Church of God in Christ have been very active in protests and in stemming the tide of violence and providing significant community support in the past as well as the present, the national reverberations of 35,000 or more people walking out of the indoor comfortability of the convention center, demanding a better world would indeed shake the foundations of this country. Creation groans and waits for the time in which the sons and daughters of God are manifested–that time is right now.
For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. [emphasis added] 
The change that we hope and pray for every Sunday begins in us. If we believe Jesus’ commission that we shall do “even greater works,” then we might as well.
Bishop Blake, General Board, members-at-large of the Church of God in Christ, since you will be in St. Louis, you might as well be the ones that turn the world upside down–the Lord is counting on you.
In the righteous indignation of the One Who Was, Who is and Who Is Yet to Come,
Joshua L. Lazard, the Uppity Negro
 Romans 8:18