If not Martin Luther King, maybe Bob Moses? Thoughts on emergent village and leadership


Writer/ promienent Christian blogger/cofounder of Emergent village Tony Jones wrote this on his blog:

… I bet you’re not disappointed with Shane Claiborne. That’s because, to this point, Shane has made the very noble decision to live a chaste life, and he has committed his whole self to an irresistible revolution. Meanwhile, most of the founders of emergent are raising children and paying mortgages and coaching YMCA t-ball. Martin Luther King didn’t coach t-ball; neither did Ghandi. Start a revolution if you want, but that’s not a price that I’m willing to pay.  

He’s right. King probably didn’t coach t-ball.  I bet King’s children hardly ever got to see their dad. And I bet that totally sucked for them.  

I might be trying to make too much out of this, but if we are using Civil Rights heroes as measuring sticks, Jones and most people I know in the conversation are more like Bob Moses.  Here is what Mother Jones (no relation to Tony) magazine said about Bob Moses:  

Moses pioneered an alternative style of leadership from the princely church leader that King epitomized,” says Civil Rights historian Taylor Branch, author of Parting the Waters. ”He was the thoughtful, self-effacing loner. He is really the father of grassroots organizing — not the Moses summoning his people on the mountaintop as King did, but, ironically, the anti-Moses, going door-to-door, listening to people, letting them lead.”

I want to coach t-ball. And I want to be part of a revolution.  If we all can’t be King, we all can be Bob Moses.


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