August 1, 2021 Editor

Am I Woke? Perhaps I am Awakening

by Christy Thomas

July 31, 2021

photo above:

photo below: from the article, AREN’T JESUS’ TEACHINGS CONSIDERED “WOKE?”

WN: Woke is described by Wikipedia thus:

Woke (/ˈwk/ WOHK) is a term, originating in the United States, that originally referred to awareness about racial prejudice and discrimination. It subsequently came to encompass an awareness of other issues of social inequality, for instance regarding gender and sexual orientation. Since the late 2010s, it has also been used as a general term for left-wing political movements and perspectives which emphasise the identity politics of people of color, LGBT people, and women.

The article which title I’m using raised the issue as a personal question. The author writes:

I do know I’m exceedingly aware of my privilege.

From what I am able to understand, truly being woke means speaking truth to those in power . . .

I just read the article today. Immediately afterwards, my wife Esther and I again tuned in to Digital Church, Good Shepherd New York. We have been doing this during the pandemic. We are caught up in:

  • the beautiful liturgical music (and beautifully produced!)
  • the simplicity
  • the all-inclusive welcome, especially to a Eucharist open to all (like the Gospel–amazing!)
  • the invariably superb preaching
  • the consistent elements of the worship experience from week to week
  • the contributions of people of diverse ethnicities, etc.

Today–as if in response to the article–we listened to a powerful message from the Book of Joel, Chapters One and Two. Though not once was the word woke referenced–despite that the sermon was by an outstanding black pastor and poet: Drew Jackson1, of Hope East Village Church, New York–it was nonetheless about the call to wake up! Outstanding. Simple. Informed. Eloquent. Hopeful. Challenging. Memorable.

Similar adjectives could be added. See what you may think of . . .

The entire Digital Church Worship from today is below. Take heart. Take solace. Take action.


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  1. His new book comes out in September: God Speaks Through Wombs: Poems on God’s Unexpected Coming.[]


Wayne Northey was Director of Man-to-Man/Woman-to-Woman – Restorative Christian Ministries (M2/W2) in British Columbia, Canada from 1998 to 2014, when he retired. He has been active in the criminal justice arena and a keen promoter of Restorative Justice since 1974. He has published widely on peacemaking and justice themes. You will find more about that on this website: a work in progress.

Always appreciate constructive feedback! Thanks.