CITY GIRL: Mavuno church was right, we need to talk to the youth
Mavuno church, the urbane, youthful house of prayer with a penchant for pushing boundaries is in trouble again. Last Sunday, they dared the unspeakable. They talked about sex in church.
In what is now an infamous series of tweets (also known as “Twitter thread”) Mavuno church took the uncharted path of discussing sex openly and getting very #Uncensored.
As usual, a lot of clueless people who did not understand the context within which Mavuno was discussing the issue, were quick to run their profane mouths on Twitter, criticising the church for openly talking about sex and also throwing in the word “rape” in their sermons.
You see, the problem with Twitter is that anyone and everyone has an opinion, their mind-boggling levels of ignorance notwithstanding.
Now, I want to be very clear. I am not a member of Mavuno church. I am a staunch Presbyterian. A card-carrying affiliate of mutaratara.
My life and my actions are underpinned on the ‘Jitegemea’ philosophy. But this of course does not mean that I do not appreciate what other churches are doing, particularly Mavuno, whose boldness and audacity has continued to impress me over the years.
In the heat of things, Mavuno issued an apology and said that the “Twitter Thread” was read and understood in a vacuum and that the real issue was to get young and single Christians to understand sex, their sexuality and God’s intention of sex.
SEX AND SEXUALITY
Mavuno was right. We need to have these conversations in church. Young people have warped ideas about sex and sexuality. There are many who have justified sex before and outside marriage. They may look like innocent little children to you, but they are ardent watchers of pornography and infamous takers of nude pictures.
If in doubt, just go through their Instagram and Facebook pages.
Some are fighting the blackdog of depression, others are battling the monkey of drugs and alcohol addiction and yet more are captives in the tentacles of a betting industry that is holding them hostage.
They have been raised in a highly hypocritical environment where sex is hardly discussed. That is why they have normalised the nasty when it comes to sex and sexual relationships. It is no wonder some of their lives are a series of dubious decisions that could have been prevented by simply having the difficult conversations about sex.
There are many young people who have been raised by unbelievably pretentious parents who simply ignore the topic of sex. It is no wonder that these youths are getting the standards for marriage and relationships from Facebook and Instagram, not from the true and real source; the Bible.
Mavuno is ahead of its time. That church has a vision. What it is doing is a classic case of faith and life integration. They are making spirituality (not religion) resonate with the daily lives of their audiences.
The Church as an institution risks being irrelevant and oblivious to the needs of its audiences when it focuses too much on spirituality without giving reasonable attention other things that matter, especially to its young audience.
This is what David Miller, in his book God at Work: The History and Promise of the Faith at Work Movement called the “Sunday-Monday gap” where Christians often complain that “Sunday worship hour bears little to no relevance to the issues they face…”
If you ask me, Mavuno should not have apologised. They should have remained calm in the face of opprobrium and stood firm on their ground.
Controversy elevates the message, and they should have used this controversy on social media to pass their message; that young people need to revise their default settings in regards to sex and begin to understand sex from the prism of Christianity.
In short, I am saying that Mavuno church should stop bothering with treading on politically-correct eggshells to please every vile hypocrite on social media. They should keep on keeping on with what will help their youthful audience.
Preach it, Mavuno, I say. Young people need to hear this message. People may insult you and provoke your pastors on Twitter for the sake of “retweets”, but deep down, they are utterly sick children in need of some love and guidance.
Mavuno church, you are exactly what the youth of this country need; a frank and caring partner, who will tell them what they need to hear, even if that truth is bitter like chroloquine.