Wanting to be part of a national movement of discipleship making and church planting in the urban context, Brian Dye began a multi-ethnic, largely minority led, conference called the Legacy Conference. Dye serves as the director of the Legacy Conference. He also serves as an elder of Legacy Christian Fellowship, a church planting movement seeking to launch a house church in each of Chicago’s 77 neighborhoods by 2020. Hosted in downtown Chicago, IL each year on the campus of the historic Moody Bible Institute, the Legacy Conference brings together many Christian women and men from various races, theological traditions, ministry contexts, and ministries to provide teaching to help Christians become better disciples of Jesus Christ in both the urban context and beyond. This year, thousands of people were in attendance.

This year’s conference featured gospel-centered Christian hip hop artists, poets, spoken word artists, preaching, and numerous teaching workshops. The conference provided multiple opportunities to learn from and fellowship with diverse brothers and sisters in Christ throughout the U.S. The opportunities were like a delicious biblical and theological buffet served in a diverse urban restaurant. Teaching workshops focused on the gospel and the ghetto, black lives matter and eschatology, the doctrines of grace, the people of God, hospitality, and much more. This year, I had the privilege of partnering with the founders of the Reformed African American Network, Jemar Tisby and Phillip Holmes, to teach a workshop focusing on the doctrines of grace. Our workshops were filled with Christians from different races, genders, ages, and theological traditions. The participants were hungry and eager to learn God’s word and theology.

In addition to Christian hip-hop artists, poets, spoken word artists, teachers, and preachers, the Legacy Conference provided Christ-centered worship. I stood in absolute amazement and joy as I worshiped the living God and his Jewish Son with many from every tongue, tribe, people, and nation in the historic Moody chapel. The different expressions of worship from the different Christian races personified many New Testament texts that emphasize the unification of all things in Christ (Ephesians 2:11-3:8). The worship also reminded me afresh that only one people of God exists from many different races, tribes, and tongues. And this one people of God from different races has been redeemed by God’s Jewish Son, Jesus, to worship him in Spirit and in truth.

A unique and refreshing feature of the Legacy Conference in comparison to many popular evangelical Christian conferences was that the majority of the teachers at the Legacy were ethnic minorities. The worship was multi-racial with the majority of worshippers being from ethnic minority groups. And Christian unity was beautifully and gracefully displayed throughout the conference.

Christians and churches interested in and serious about multi-racial ministry in an urban context should attend the Legacy Conference 2016. This conference will provide its attendees with a biblical and theological understanding of God’s mission for the world through his Jewish Son Jesus Christ.

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