LISTEN: Lawrence Ware’s NY Times Op-Ed Spurs Discussion of Race Within SBC; Former President Obama Calls for ‘Courage’ to Fix Obamacare (BCNN1, 7/29/2017)

This is the Black Christian News Network Podcast for Saturday, July 29, 2017.

1. According to Baptist Press, a black Oklahoma minister’s New York Times op-ed “renouncing [his] ordination in the Southern Baptist Convention” has drawn responses from a range of African Americans who say they will continue to cooperate with the convention as it pursues racial reconciliation. Meanwhile, the op-ed’s author, Lawrence Ware, explained his views in an interview with Baptist Press, noting he does not believe Southern Baptists by and large are intentionally racist. He also said he likely would have “softened” some of his language against the SBC if given an opportunity to rewrite the op-ed.

2. According to the Daily Beast, former President Obama said Congress must “demonstrate the necessary bipartisanship and political courage” to “build on” the Affordable Care Act, according to a statement by his spokesperson, Kevin Lewis. The former president emphasized his trademark legislation’s successes in health care availability, but also said that “there will always be more work to do” to make the country “stronger and healthier.” The statement comes after the Senate failed to pass a “skinny repeal” of the health care act on Thursday night, landing a seemingly final blow to the seven-year Republican effort to repeal Obamacare.

3. According to the Christian Post, Tasha Cobbs-Leonard has a biblical response for those who do not approve of a new song that she recorded with rap star Nicki Minaj for her upcoming album, Heart. Passion. Pursuit. Cobbs-Leonard shared a meme on her Instagram page that showed church attendees with shocked expressions. The caption on the meme says, “When saints found out that Tasha Cobbs-Leonard & Nicki Minaj finally did a gospel track together.” The 36-year-old gospel music singer added a caption to the meme, sharing Romans 14:1 from the MSG Bible. She went on to use hashtags to tell people that the 34-year-old rapper born as Onika Maraj might know God better than some gospel music fans.

4. According to Path MEGAzine, Tina Campbell, the multiple award winning soloist, multi-Grammy® winning recording artist, author, WE tv original series star, and now web series star, who, with sister Erica is one-half of the iconic Gospel duo, Mary Mary, unveils her new single, the Gospel/Pop ballad, “Too Hard Not To,” this coming Friday, July 28th, on sister Erica Campbell’s nationally syndicated morning radio show Get Up! Mornings With Erica Campbell. In the coming weeks Tina returns with her newest solo album, It’s Still Personal, the follow-up to 2015’s solo debut, It’s Personal. The creation and recording of It’s Still Personal will be highlighted throughout the upcoming Season 6 of Tina’s original hit WE tv series, “Mary Mary.”

5. According to NPR, the next Game of Thrones could be a sci-fi epic set in Africa. On Monday, Nigerian-American author Nnedi Okorafor posted an announcement on her Facebook page: “I’m finally free to announce this: My World Fantasy Award winning novel WHO FEARS DEATH has been optioned by HBO and is now in early development as a TV series with George R. R. Martin as executive producer. Note: This did not happen overnight. It’s been nearly 4 years coming.” Martin is, of course, the author of the novels that became the HBO smash hit Game of Thrones and also serves as a co-executive producer of the series. The news is a major win not just for Okorafor but for African fiction and representation of African issues on television.

6. According to Rolling Out, Bobby Brown has paid tribute to Bobbi Kristina Brown on the second anniversary of her death. The crooner tweeted a video of Bobbi Kristina Brown singing Adele’s “Someone Like You” along with an advertisement for the National Domestic Violence Hotline on Wednesday, July 26, 2017, which marked two years since the aspiring singer passed away after almost six months in a coma. He captioned the video: “I [purple heart] you BabyGirl #BobbyKristina.” Last year, Bobbi’s boyfriend Nick Gordon was ordered to pay her family $36M after being found legally responsible for her death.

7. According to Reuters, Denver Broncos linebacker Shane Ray could miss the start of the NFL season after sustaining a ligament tear in his left wrist that will sideline him for six to eight weeks. Ray picked up the injury just two days into training camp after attempting to shed a block during Thursday’s practice, coach Vance Joseph said on Friday. Joseph told reporters: “He fell on it today doing pass rush but he was already injured.” Ray, 24, is scheduled to have surgery on Saturday. The third-year player had eight sacks and 48 tackles last season and is expected to play a bigger role for the team in 2017. The Broncos open the season with a Monday night game against the Los Angeles Chargers at Mile High Stadium on Sept 11.