Chick-fil-A boss Dan Cathy knelt down with a shoe brush and shined the sneakers of Christian rapper Lecrae as pastor Louie Giglio looked on during their conversation on race and the church.
About half-way through their June 14 conversation, Cathy told of his prior encounter with a 19-year-old Black man who surprised him with his use of the term “repentance” during a panel discussion.
Cathy then told of a story he heard from a friend about how at a revival meeting, a young man who felt convicted about racism in his local community took a brush and knelt at the feet of an elderly Black man and shined his shoes.
“It was an attitude of conviction,” Cathy said.
At that point, Cathy rose from his chair as he encouraged viewers to put their words into action.
He walked over to where Lecrae was seated and proceeded to kneel down and brush the Atlanta rapper’s white tennis shoes. The two ended the interaction with a hug—although Lecrae joked that Cathy should also give him some Chick-fil-A stocks.
Cathy went on to reveal that he had purchased about 1,500 shoe brushes like the one he held and given them to his Chick-fil-A staff and operators “a number of years ago.”
“And so in expressions of a contrite heart, a sense of humility, a sense of shame, a sense of embarrassment (unintelligible) with an apologetic heart. I think that’s what our world needs to hear today,” Cathy said.
The conversation was published on Passion City Church’s YouTube channel with the interaction described as “an honest conversation about race and the Church.”
Many Christian communities and leaders have been hosting conversations about race and justice in the wake of the police killing of George Floyd on May 25. Some examples include Joel Osteen and John Gray, and Rod Parsley.
Cathy begins speaking about pairing action with words at about 55 minutes into the video.