In Chicago, the preservation of the Black Panther Party’s historical sites is more than just a question over whether a place should be on a national register – it’s a spiritual question. The places that are central to the Black Panther Party also have the capacity to move us still today to consider their urgent, burning questions. And isn’t that the work of the church?
Churches can be a vital force for their community’s mental health by gathering community, lifting up others in prayer, and creating safe spaces where access to community support is not predicated on falsely claiming that everything is fine.
Human beings have an almost limitless capacity for self-delusion, and “Midnight Mass” does much to put it on display. Perhaps that is its most redeeming offering: it forces the interpreter of Scripture to be humble.