Rev. Moss to faith communicators: "Remix your message"
by Deb Christian
CHICAGO (RCCongress2010) April 10, 2010 — When a pastor known for his work in developing a new generation of prophetic leaders in a faith tradition and for bridging the generation gap stands up and tells you to be ready to "remix" your message, you stop for a few minutes and listen.
In a Friday plenary address delivered at the April 7-10 Religion Communication Congress 2010 in Chicago, Rev. Otis Moss, pastor of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, made the point to the gathering of faith communications professionals that the older generation should be ready to "remix your message".
Rev. Moss contrasted the leadership styles of Old Testament figures Moses and Joshua, beginning his story with the statement that "Moses was dead....," and went on to highlight other differences.
"Moses was a pastoral leader," Rev. Moss said, "Joshua was a military man. Moses was doo-wop, Joshua was hip hop. Moses had a hymnbook, Joshua had a radio. Moses was building a church, Joshua was building a community.
"They had the same values, but different methods, and the same is true for us today," Rev. Moss continued. "Learn how to remix. Take the tried and true values and remix those for the new generation. Give them a new beat.
"Joshua was able to remix because Moses gave him the tools. We must be willing to do what Moses did; transfer power. We can advise, as Moses did, but we must let the new generation reach their own. We should provide the mentoring. Don't let the Donald Trumps of the world train them."
"We support our generation, the young people will support theirs. Only the method will change, not the message. Remix love, compassion, justice, race, and faithfulness, "he said.
During the question and answer period following the speech, Rev. Moss and a member of the audience agreed on a final point: "It is important to recognize that while Moses was dead, the God who spoke to him is not dead."
Rev. Moss has done extensive research in the areas of African-American culture, theology and youth development.
RCCongress2010 is the fifth meeting of a once-a-decade event for communication professionals from a variety of faith traditions.
Deb Christian, a member of the communications committee for RCCongress2010, is customer care director for the United Methodist Reporter
Media Contact: Lesley Crosson, 347-513-4030