This past weekend I went to the International Motorcycle Show at the Javits Center in Manhattan where I had the opportunity to not only sit on, ogle over, and touch some of the newest Super Sport bikes available, but also got to meet members of the Christian Motorcyclists Association who had a sweet little table complete with candy and a good number of free pamphlets.
Started in 1975 by Herb Shreve, a pastor who, it is said, bought his first motorcycle in order to better connect with his son, the CMA’s mission is to spread the word of Jesus Christ throughout the greater motorcycle community. In addition, local CMA chapters agree to:
- Provide and encourage members to be active in testimony and Christian
witnessing to all motorcyclists.
- Provide a Christian fellowship ride group.
- Provide an evangelistic association for motorcycling.
Since its founding, the CMA has gained roughly 125,000 follows with 800 chapters in all fifty US states, along with chapters in at least 27 foreign countries including Zimbabwe, the United Arab Emirates, and Albania.
Previously an organization dominated by the “cruiser” community (think laid back Harleys, choppers, and touring bikes), the CMA has recently begun reaching out to the “sport bike” community (think Suzuki/Honda/Kawasaki/Yamaha “crotch rockets,” etc.) through its “Fast Lane” ministry, most notably in South Africa, a chapter whose website’s look is based entirely on sport bike aesthetics.
Regardless of the approach to motorcycling, the message is clear, preaching and acting according to biblical standards is paramount, as the New York City chapter of the CMA states on their website:
As a member of this ministry each member will agree to live and act under biblical principles of conduct. These principles should be effective in your daily life, but must be followed whenever a member is wearing the CMA back patch. Many scriptures can be presented to support a godly lifestyle, but use the following scripture passages as an overview: Titus 3:1-11; Gal. 5:13; Matt. 18:15-19; 1 Cor. 6; James 4:1-10.
My time meeting with the CMA was short lived, but I did have a chance to pick up some tracts before the man behind the counter asked if I wanted him to pray for me. I got nervous and told him that I was taken care of, having already prayed for myself that morning. However, when I left I felt lame for rejecting the prayer and went back to cash in my rain check, but instead smiled as I walked passed, chickening out once again.