Sunday, August 13, 2006

Bono Is Seeing Christianity Redefined

Friday I had the unusual opportunity to see U2 lead singer, Bono. Of all places, I was attending a leadership conference and Bono was being interviewed by Chicago Pastor Bill Hybels. The subject was about the responsibility that we all bear to speak for those that have no voice and to advocate for those who are without power in our world.

Of special focus was Bono’s humanitarian effort in Africa and his challenge to churches to get involved and make a difference. Apparently in 1984 Bono was a part of Band Aid (he’s been a part of several other concert fund raising efforts since) where his personal encounter with poverty and disease broke and seized his heart.

Bono is out in the open that he sees his celebrity as a gift to be spent on behalf of those in greatest need. As a result Bono has been calling heads of state, film stars, rock stars and even pastors to enlist them all in the battle against poverty and disease.

During the interview Pastor Hybels asked Bono a few questions about his faith. Bono said something that I’ve heard several others say through the years. His reply was, “I really like Jesus. It is Christians that I have a problem with.”

Since Bono’s initial contact with Hybels many churches have begun to join the movement for justice for our world’s weakest people. Hybels asked Bono, “Is your opinion about Christians and churches changing?” Bono replied with an obvious smile, “Yes. Christians are really making it difficult for me to continue to dislike them.”

Christianity and the Church have often been slow to respond to need, especially in the West. But in many nations in the world Christianity has been the first on the scene to build schools and hospitals. In recent national and international disasters Christian organizations were first on the front lines providing food and medical aid and building shelters for the homeless.

If you have been like Bono (Jesus is okay but Christians are problematic) perhaps you could give it all a second look and a second chance.

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