January , 2019

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  Eric Rodriguez of Latino Union of Chicago Awarded Local Economy Fellowship, Joins North American Leadership ...
WASHINGTON, DC – President Barack Obama announced his intent to nominate the following individuals ...

Archive for the ‘Religion’ Category

AME Church Leaders Cite Black Economic Empowerment as 2015 Goal

Posted by Admin On February - 5 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS



By Hazel Trice Edney

(TriceEdneyWire.com) – When Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated, he and other protestors had won passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Therefore, his agenda had turned toward the next major issue – economic empowerment for Black people.

Therefore, on April 3, 1968, planning a march on behalf of oppressed sanitation workers, Dr. King told preachers at the Mason Temple in Memphis, Tenn., “It’s all right to talk about long white robes over yonder, in all of its symbolism. But ultimately people want some suits and dresses and shoes to wear down here!

“It’s all right to talk about streets flowing with milk and honey, but God has commanded us to be concerned about the slums down here, and his children who can’t eat three square meals a day.

“It’s all right to talk about the new Jerusalem, but one day, God’s preacher must talk about the new New York, the new Atlanta, the new Philadelphia, the new Los Angeles, the new Memphis, Tennessee. This is what we have to do.”

The next day, Dr. King was assassinated.

Nearly 47 years later, as America last month celebrated the King birthday holiday and is now celebrating Black History Month, a group of church leaders appears to be carrying out this Black economic empowerment goal in earnest. Invited to speak to a recent gathering of pastors and leaders of the African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E.) Church, National Bankers Association President Michael Grant cited the words of human rights champion Paul Robeson:

‘”We realize that our future lies chiefly in our own hands,'” Grant quoted. “‘We know that neither institution nor friends can make a race stand unless it has strength in its own foundation; that races like individuals must stand or fall by their own merit; that to fully succeed they must practice the virtues of self-reliance, self-respect, industry, perseverance, and economy.'”

Grant continued in his own words: “We played a major role in growing America from a small colonial outpost to the greatest industrial giant the world has ever known. We don’t have to argue about our ability to grow wealth. We have made everyone else rich, some filthy rich. Isn’t it time that we finally make our efforts productive for ourselves?”

Grant was keynote speaker during a special session on “Economic Development through the Black Church” during the A.M.E. Church’s 2nd District Mid-year Opening Plenary Session in Raleigh, N.C. late last year. His speech preceded a panel discussion that also included Marie Johns, former deputy administrator at the Small Business Administration; Ron Busby, president/CEO of the U. S. Black Chambers Inc. and Rev. Jonathan Weaver, senior pastor of Greater Mt. Nebo A.M.E. Church in Bowie, Md., and board member of the A.M.E. organization that deals with economic growth and development projects.

Following the forum, Weaver says A.M.E. pastors, led by Bishop William P. DeVeaux, are now poised to carry out a specific plan that they hope will spread to other denominations and ultimately catch fire in other denominations and the Black community throughout 2015.

“Clearly where we are at this point is to actualize and implement what we discussed in Raleigh,” said Weaver in an interview. “The whole thrust was how Black churches can help to empower Black businesses.”

The starting plan, in a nutshell, is for churches located in the A.M.E. Second District – North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and D.C. – to commit to the support of two Black-owned businesses. They are Thomas Morehead, president of a BMW dealership in Sterling, Va. and Donnell Thompson, co-founder/co-owner of RWDT Foods, Inc., a chain of restautrants based in N. Snellville, Ga.

AME church members buying from those two businesses will cause the churches to benefit from those sales; then identify other businesses in and around the states and “replicate this process”, Weaver described. After tracking the sales, initiated by the churches, the hope is that other church districts will get involved and that the movement will spread to other businesses and other churches.

“And we certainly hope and pray that this will become a much larger Black faith effort and we will reach out to the Baptist community, the Church of God and Christ and the list goes on,” Weaver said. “If we’re able to affect a significant change in terms of relationship with Black businesses, can you imagine if we’re able to boost their profit margin and therefore they are going to have to hire more people and therefore they will be reaching back to the faith community. More people will have jobs, they will have better jobs; therefore there will be less frustration, economically, in our community.”

So far, the congregations have been receptive to the idea, Weaver said. “Quite frankly, I’ve not met any resistance thus far.”

In his speech, Grant reminded the audience that a legacy of Black economic develop was at the core of the founding of the A.M.E. Church.

“I agree with that great A.M.E. historiographer, Dr. Dennis C. Dickerson, who said that the history of the African Methodist Episcopal Church – founded – by Bishop Richard Allen – reflects the black liberationist narrative of African – American history,” Grant said. “Nearly eight decades before the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation, Allen, a free man, was already promoting Black economic development. So it is fitting that we come to his church today with an urgent message: The time for Americans of African descent to take our place at the round table of economic opportunity is now. With each passing day, the price of not having a well – thought out economic agenda for Black America continues to extract a toll and degrade our position in this country and throughout the diaspora.”

Grant, who last year received the U. S. Department of Commerce’s Lifetime Achievement Award for his Black business advocacy, ticked off statistics that undergird the need for an economic movement to support Black-owned businesses and Black-owned banks:

There are currently 1.9 million Black-owned businesses in America, but only about one in 20 have more than one employee and less than 2 percent have annual gross receipts of more than $1,000,000.

In terms of relative wealth, White America is 20 times richer than Black America, according to a recent Pew Report.

In the 1960’s, we had 60 Black-owned banks. Today, that number has dwindled to only 30. What is insane about this tragic loss is this: The bank is the only institution in our community that can leverage or multiply dollars 7, 8, 9 or 10 times. That means for every $1,000,000 dollars of invested capital in these banks, they are able to loan out 7, 8, 9 or $10 million for economic development, business growth and job creation.

Grant said African-Americans lost significant ground in business ownership after integration, largely because African-Americans were no longer forced to support each other.

“As long as we were forced to trade with each other and barter with each other, our businesses (small as they were) thrived. But in our minds, we were never quite good enough. We had internalized the lie about our lack of inherent worth,” he said. “When the doors of integration gave us the long – awaited pass to wine and dine with our former oppressors, we enthusiastically abandoned our own in search of an elusive White acceptance. We believed then – and many of us still do – that association would bring on assimilation.”

Dr. King concluded on April 3, 1968, the eve of his assassination: “We’ve got to stay together and maintain unity. You know, whenever Pharaoh wanted to prolong the period of slavery in Egypt, he had a favorite, favorite formula for doing it. What was that? He kept the slaves fighting among themselves. But whenever the slaves get together, something happens in Pharaoh’s court, and he cannot hold the slaves in slavery. When the slaves get together, that’s the beginning of getting out of slavery. Now let us maintain unity.”

Photo Captions:

Photo 1: Rev. Jonathan Weaver

Photo 2: National Bankers Association President Michael Grant, U.S. Black Chambers Inc. President Ron Busby, and A.M.E. board member Rev. Jonathan Weaver discuss a new plan for economic development through the Black Church.

Dr. Ray Allen Berryhill to Head Two Racially Diverse Congregations

Posted by Admin On October - 4 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS
Historic installation is Sunday

By Chinta Strausberg

In an expanded move towards racial reconciliation, Rev. Dr. Ray Allen Berryhill, Senior Pastor of Evangel World Outreach Center, will be installed this Sunday as the Pastor of the retiring Apostle David Rivera’s Centro Cristiano Bethesda Church and will oversee a racially diverse more than 1200 member congregation under the new name of Resurrected Life Church International.

History will be made on Sunday, October 5, 2014, at 10 a.m., 4538 West Fullerton, where Rev. Berryhill will take another leap of faith from a 10,000 square foot church to a 48,000 square foot complex. He and Apostle Rivera will be celebrating diversity and honoring the legacy of two churches bonding to become one under the leadership of Berryhill.

Referring to Apostle Rivera, Rev. Berryhill said, “After much thought and prayer, when pastor chose to retire, he also desired to place his congregation into my care. Apostle Rivera is one of the most respected Hispanic clergyman in the Chicagoland area.”

Berryhill feels it is an honor to lead both congregations. As pastor, he served the Belmont-Cragin community since 1992. He moved his church from 5100 West Diversey Avenue to his current 4538 West Fullerton site in the neighboring Hermosa community on August 3, 2014 and looks forward to utilizing this worship complex to address critical community concerns including hunger,education, youth mentoring, and anti-violence.

“It is not just a church building. It is a complex and a community center,” said Berryhill. It houses a beautiful sanctuary which holds 800, a full-service daycare, a small chapel, a commercial kitchen, a beautiful banquet room which seats 200 comfortably; a full-court gymnasium; a dance studio; a weight room; a youth recreation area complete with pool, ping pong, air hockey and video games; plus classrooms, offices and much more.

While Bethesda is predominately Hispanic, Berryhill said Evangel World Outreach Center has 40 different nationalities including German, Italian, Polish, Asian, Filipino, Latino, African and African American.

“As one church, we can continue impacting our neighborhood with multicultural, multilingual, multigenerational ministry at multiple service times. I am privileged that in a time when there is so much racial tension and hostility to have been chosen by God and this Pastor to be a standard-bearer for reconciliation.” said the 58-year-old Dr. Berryhill.

Additionally, Berryhill said the union “is also an opportunity to expand blessing the communities.” Berryhill was referring to “40 Days of Blessing” which he organized and partnered with Saint Sabina’s Father Michael L. Pfleger and 30 other churches. Berryhill gave away cars, oil changes, gasoline, paid utilities/mortgages/rents, and a Free Store providing clothing, shoes, furniture, appliances, toys and games to all who were in need.

“So I am thrilled over the merger of two powerful and robust ministries and their continuation of community service to expand the Kingdom of God. ” said Berryhill. “…And to have a prominent Hispanic pastor with a legacy of 32-years entrusting his congregationi nto my care as an African American, it is not only amazing…it is unprecedented.”

Dr. Berryhill is married to Adrienne for more than 40-years. She serves as the Women’s Pastor and performs a myriad of administrative functions. Together they have seven children and eight grandchildren.

“Not only is my church multicultural but my family is also multicultural. Two of my sons married Latino women and have given me four beautiful biracial grandchildren.” Rev. Berryhill also speaks Spanish, but he uses an interpreter when preaching to his Spanish-speaking congregants. ResurrectedLife Church International “ is a place to belong committed to passionately making disciples of all nations.”

Berryhill attended Moody Bible Institute, Chicago Baptist Institute and Bakke University, majoring in theology. He also attended DePaul University for business administration. Berryhill received an honorary doctorate from St.Thomas Christian University and Theological Seminary in Jacksonville, Florida.
In an expanded move towards racial reconciliation, Rev. Dr. Ray Allen Berryhill, Senior Pastor of Evangel World Outreach Center, will be installed this Sunday as the Pastor of the retiring Apostle David Rivera’s Centro Cristiano Bethesda Church and will oversee a racially diverse more than 1200 member congregation under the new name of Resurrected Life Church International.In an expanded move towards racial reconciliation, Rev. Dr. Ray Allen Berryhill, Senior Pastor of Evangel World Outreach Center, will be installed this Sunday as the Pastor of the retiring Apostle David Rivera’s Centro Cristiano Bethesda Church and will oversee a racially diverse more than 1200 member congregation under the new name of Resurrected Life Church International.History will be made on Sunday, October 5, 2014, at 10 a.m., 4538 West Fullerton, where Rev. Berryhill will take another leap of faith from a 10,000 square foot church to a 48,000 square foot complex. He and Apostle Rivera will be celebrating diversity and honoring the legacy of two churches bonding to become one under the leadership of Berryhill. Referring to Apostle Rivera, Rev. Berryhill said, “After much thought and prayer, when pastor chose to retire, he also desired to place his congregation into my care. Apostle Rivera is one of the most respected Hispanic clergyman in the Chicagoland area.”History will be made on Sunday, October 5, 2014, at 10 a.m., 4538 West Fullerton, where Rev. Berryhill will take another leap of faith from a 10,000 square foot church to a 48,000 square foot complex. He and Apostle Rivera will be celebrating diversity and honoring the legacy of two churches bonding to become one under the leadership of Berryhill. Referring to Apostle Rivera, Rev. Berryhill said, “After much thought and prayer, when pastor chose to retire, he also desired to place his congregation into my care. Apostle Rivera is one of the most respected Hispanic clergyman in the Chicagoland area.”History will be made come 10 a.m., Sunday, October 5, 2014, when an Hispanic church bonds with a racially diverse African American church and become one. Resurrected Life Church International “is a place to belong committed to passionately making disciples of all nations.”History will be made come 10 a.m., Sunday, October 5, 2014, when an Hispanic church bonds with a racially diverse African American church and become one. Resurrected Life Church International “is a place to belong committed to passionately making disciples of all nations.”

Chinta Strausberg is a Journalist of more than 33-years, a former political reporter and a current PCC Network talk show host. You can e-mail Strausberg at: Chintabernie@aol.com.

Senior Pastor Ray Berryhill and Apostle David Rivera Join Forces to Create a Dynamic Urban Church Representing More Than 50 Nations

Posted by Admin On October - 3 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

Alderman Ray Suarez, Congressman Danny Davis, Illinois Secretary of State jesse White and other political and community notables to attend church merger celebration

CHICAGO, IL – Senior Pastor Ray Berryhill of Evangel World Outreach Center, and a recognized trailblazer in developing and leading diverse congregations, and Apostle David Rivera, of Centro Cristiano Bethesda Church, and a 30-plus-year pastoral leader beloved by his community have entered into a unique partnership that they hope will encourage other churches to look at resource share, diversity and sustainability via reuse in a new way.

On Sunday, October 5th, 2014 at 10:00 a.m., Dr. Berryhill will be officially taking the helm of Apostle Rivera’s church at an installation ceremony.  Leadership and congregants will be merged and the church will be renamed Resurrected Life Church International. Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Governor Pat Quinn may also be in attendance.

Instead of securing or building a space for a new Church to accommodate his robust membership, Pastor Berryhill gave a nod to sustainability and forged a relationship with Apostle Rivera who has decided to retire after 32 years of dedicated service. This provided the large Evangel congregation with a much needed venue and provided Bethesda with needed resources to sustain the beautiful church. This is notable as Rivera and Berryhill are not the same denomination, and the leaders made a decision to bond congregations not based on race or predominate language but brother and sisterhood.

This worship complex houses a beautiful sanctuary which holds 800; a full-service daycare; a small chapel; a commercial kitchen; a beautiful banquet room which seats 200 comfortably; a full-court gymnasium; a dance studio; a weight room; a youth recreation area complete with pool, ping pong, air hockey and video games; plus classrooms, offices and much more.

Through Apostle David Rivera’s leadership, “Bethesda” has become a household name due to their exceptional work in the community.

Pastor Berryhill and his flock have a reputation for bringing value to the community; and this complex will allow the church’s legacy of service to continue by providing an expansive space to host programs around education, youth mentoring, violence prevention, and assisting the homeless as well as providing a place to just have some fun.

“God is pleased today. This is the true breaking of the color barrier in which our Lord had proclaimed. But it’s also a true testament to the hard work that Pastor Berryhill has put towards making a multi-cultural congregation extremely successful,” says Bishop Larry Trotter of the Sweet Holy Spirit Church of Chicago.

Many senior clergymen throughout the nation consider Pastor Berryhill ” Best in Class” at formalizing diverse congregations. This is the changing face for congregations in Chicago, and Dr. Ray Berryhill has been ahead of this trend for more than two decades.

This milestone will take place Sunday October 5th at 10:00 AM at the Evangel World Outreach Center’s new location, 4538 W. Fullerton in Chicago.

Father Pfleger Hopes New Cardinal Will Have the Heart of Pope Francis and Remember the Poor

Posted by Admin On September - 20 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

Lauds police work in arrests of 4

By Chinta Strausberg

Reacting to an Associated Press story that Pope Francis has chosen a new Cardinal for Chicago, Father Michael L. Pfleger late Friday night said he hopes the new Cardinal will have the heart of Pope Francis and reach out to the poor, the disenfranchised and the forgotten.

Earlier, Pfleger attended a press conference convened by Police Supt. Garry McCarthy who announced the arrest of four youth in the shooting death of 9-year-old Antonio Smith, Jr. Arrested and charged with first-degree murder were: Jabari Williams, 22, Derrick Almon, 19 and Michael Baker, 19.

Pfleger said the gang members reportedly thought Smith was trying to warn their rivals they had planned on shooting; so they took out the little boy. Pfleger said he had been shot multiple times. McCarthy said neither Smith nor his family had any gang ties.

Pfleger praised with two officers who did a “really good job” and the calls that have similar valid information. “It looked like they were hunting two guys from another gang. They saw them and got out to get after them. Antonio Smith, who had nothing to do with this, screamed out. It’s unclear whether they were screaming to warn them or because he was scared. He’s a little boy…. Anybody who would kill a 9-year-old child will kill anybody.”

Interviewed at the end of his last peace march for 2014, Pfleger reacted to the Pope’s appointment of 65-year-old Spokane, Washington Bishop Base Cupich to replace 77-year-old Cardinal George who is undergoing a special cancer treatment at the University of Chicago Hospital.

Vowing to keep Cardinal George in his prayers and that he hopes he will be completely healed “and enjoy his days of retirement, be healthy and to live out the fullness of his life,”  Pfleger said he hopes the new cardinal “will have the heart of Pope Francis.

“My hope is that he will have the heart as Francis did to call the world back to caring again about the poor…caring about the disenfranchised…those who feel forgotten along life’s road on the Jericho road of life,” he said.

“My hope is also that he, like Pope Francis, continue to broaden us beyond the church has been very narrow on in the last few years as if the only issues were abortion and same sex marriage. What the Pope has said is that we must be concerned about every issue affecting humanity.

“I pray that coming to Chicago, he will have the courage to deal with race because racism is alive and well in Chicago and in America,” Pfleger said. He also hopes that the new Cardinal will “have the courage to deal with violence and to stand up to the NRA on guns. I hope he will be open to dialogue.

“Pope Francis has not just only opened the windows but the doors of the church and said everything is on the table” to discuss. Pfleger hopes this new Cardinal will have “the same kind of openness and be inclusive and not exclusive. I hope he will bring a new return of the church to the gospel of Jesus Christ” which Pfleger said is “very radical. It’s very courageous. It’s very strong.

“What we need in America and in the world right now that is full of racism, poverty, unemployment and war. We need love. We need justice and we need peace,” Pfleger said hoping that the new Cardinal will “come to be a voice for that in Chicago as Pope Francis is to the world at this time.”

Earlier, Pfleger, who was joined by scores of supporters, marched throughout the Auburn Gresham community calling for an end of shooting and chanting, “put the guns down” and an end to the violence. He changed his route to include 81st and Laflin where a girl was shot.

In a closing prayer, Pfleger said, “Violence is every where. It has seeped into every community. We can stop it when we decide to stop it. We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. We’ve been given power and authority. When we stand up and walk in it, live in it and speak it, then we can change the face of the earth.”

Pfleger said what they have done throughout the summer on his peace marches have made a difference. We are agents of change and we are Disciples of Christ. We will make a difference. We will transform atmospheres into the very Kingdom of God…. We accept our charge. We’re not afraid. We’re not weary. We’re not compromised…. We stand up to the enemy and say, ‘Here we are with justice, peace and love….’ ”

Chinta Strausberg is a Journalist of more than 33-years, a former political reporter and a current PCC Network talk show host. You can e-mail Strausberg at: Chintabernie@aol.com.

What Does the Bible say About Tattoos or Body Piercings?

Posted by Admin On September - 2 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

“I was questioned by readers – Here are my Biblical findings”

By Rev. Harold E. Bailey

President of Probation Challenge

The Old Testament law commanded the Israelites, “Do not cut your bodies for the dead or put tattoo marks on yourselves. I am the LORD” Leviticus 19:28. Though believers we are not under the Old Testament law Romans 10:4; Galatians 3:23-25; Ephesians 2:15, the fact remains that there was a command against tattoos and should raise some valid questions!

I hasten to point out that the New Testament does not say anything about whether or not a believer should not get a tattoo.

In relation to tattoos and body piercing’s, a good test is to determine whether we can honestly, in good conscience, ask God to bless and use that particular activity for His own good purposes. “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God” 1 Corinthians 10:31.  Question: Is body piercing done to the glory of God?

The New Testament does not command against tattoos or body piercing’s, but it also does not give us any reason to believe God would have us get tattoos or body piercing’s. Nor to discount the command made in the Old Testament!

An important scriptural principle on issues the Bible does not specifically address is if there is room for doubt whether it pleases God, then it is best not to engage in that activity.

Romans 14:23 reminds us that anything that does not come from faith is sin. We need to remember that our bodies, as well as our souls, have been redeemed and belong to God. Although 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 does not directly apply to tattoos or body piercing’s, it does give us a principle: “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.”

This great truth should have a real bearing on what we do and where we go with our bodies. If our bodies belong to God, we should make sure we have His clear “permission” before we “mark them up” with tattoos or body piercing’s.

When God made a covenant with Israel, he considered it like entering into a marriage covenant. As a gift to her (Israel), he said the following.

I also clothed you with embroidered work, and I shod you with leather sandals. And I wrapped you in fine linen, and I covered you with silk. And I adorned you with ornaments, and I put bracelets upon your hands and a chain on your neck. And I put a ring on your nose, and earrings in your ears . . . (Ezekiel 16:10 – 12)

The conclusion  of the matter: God’s word does not prohibit wearing earrings or body piercing. The Bible is however clear that putting tattoos on one’s body is not God’s perfect will for his people. Remember: All that we do we should do it unto the Lord… if we can’t … don’t do it!

Rev. Harold E. Bailey is the president of Probation Challenge

WWW.ProbationChallenge.org – The Truth Network

Pastor Mitty Collier’s Feed-A-Neighbor Ministries to distribute “Bags of Blessings” December 14th to more than 300 children and families

Posted by Admin On December - 13 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

In an effort to exercise Goodwill toward more than 300 children and Families, “Bags of Blessings” will be distributed December 14, 2013 at More Like Christian Fellowship Ministries, 8201 S. Dobson, in Chicago at 10:00 A.M.

CHICAGO, IL – On Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 10:00 a.m., Feed-A-Neighbor (FAN) Ministries, under the leadership of Pastor Mitty Collier, will distribute “Bags of Blessings” consisting of brand new toys, games, soccer and footballs, hats, socks, gloves, fruit, nuts, candy and toiletries.  These bags will be given on a first come-first serve basis, to children and adults across the Chicagoland area.  In addition, there are 100 new coats ranging from sizes 3T-16, that will be distributed.

Established in 1985, FAN has distributed food, clothing and toiletries to the less fortunate for over 28 years.  Pastor Collier, along with other concerned Christians, gather each second Saturday of the month at 10:00 a.m., to feed and clothe the less fortunate.  Hats, gloves, socks, fruit, nuts, candy, and toiletries are provided to everyone, along with two new toys for the youth on this special Christmas FAN.

Collier, Founder/ President of FAN and Pastor of More Like Christ Christian Fellowship Church, recognizes the need to reach out to our ‘neighbors’, who are those who have a need, regardless of race, color, creed, or religious affiliation, that may be less fortunate than us.

The Ministry usually takes place each second Saturday on the lot across from the church at 8159 S. Dobson, but because of the inclimate weather, the Ministry will move inside the church at 8201 S. Dobson. Children must be present to receive the Bags of Blessings!

For more information, contact Pastor Mitty Collier at (773) 371-2448 (church) or (773) 218-4557 mobile

Pastor Ira Acree to donate 50 toys to CPS student Toy Drive

Posted by Admin On November - 29 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

Tells critics we must support our youth

By Chinta Strausberg

CHICAGO, IL – Pastor Ira J. Acree, head of the St. John Bible Church and co-chair of the Leaders Network, late Wednesday night committed to donating 50 toys to 10-year-old Samuel Love’s disaster project designed to give toys and/or gift cards to children who were victims of natural disasters.

Love, who is a fourth grader at the Beasley Academy Center, 5255 South State Street, is holding his second toy drive on Black Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at his grandmother’s restaurant, Josephine’s Cooking, 436 E. 79th St., where proceeds will go to children who were victims of the Oklahoma and Denver, Colorado flood and tornadoes.

On November 29, 2013, commonly called ‘Black Friday,’ young Love will be accepting unwrapped toys and/or gift cards at the restaurant formerly called Captain Hardtimes. His grandmother, Josephine “Mother” Wade, will be serving free homemade soup to anyone donating a toy and/or a gift card.

Acree, who is author of “In Pursuit of Mr. Right,” said, “For a child to have a heart to want to do something of this magnitude, it’s evident that he’s special person. For this to be Black Friday and he is more concerned about others rather than himself speaks volumes about his character and his heart. This kind gesture is the epitome of selflessness.

“Our community desperately needs these types of selfless acts if we ever truly plan to recover from the madness that we face daily. I’ve already been attacked for pledging to support this effort. The question was asked why send gifts to Oklahoma or Colorado when people are hurting in Washington Illinois. I personally have already committed our church to supporting those relief efforts but even if we hadn’t, by virtue of the fact that a child has a heart and the spirit to think on this level and magnitude compel me to support and go the extra mile.

“The older generation of leaders must look for younger leaders to pour into and to encourage. Rev. Jesse Jackson was a college student under Dr. King, the godfather of soul; James Brown let the boy preacher 10 year old Rev. Al Sharpton follow him around. The prophet Jeremiah was also just a boy when God called and anointed him. Trust me on this, this kid’s action is God ordained,” said Pastor Acree.

Hats off to Pastor Acree for opening up his heart and wallet to this up and coming student who has a passion for helping children who are victims of natural disasters. Acree said his gifts would be ready for Love’s December 14th trip to Little Axe, OK, which is his second planned trip where he will deliver the gifts and meet a number of officials. On Friday, December 6, 2013, Love will be taking 1,000 toys to Lyons, Colorado.

Chinta Strausberg is a Journalist of more than 33-years, a former political reporter and a current PCC Network talk show host. You can e-mail Strausberg at: Chintabernie@aol.com.

New book chronicles the life of Peter W. Clark, a Black Louisiana Methodist Pioneer

Posted by Admin On November - 20 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

Author Elaine Parker Adams tells the amazing story of her great-grandfather, the Rev. Peter W. Clark

HOUSTON, TX (BlackNews.com) — Elaine Parker Adams immortalizes the life of her great-grandfather, the Rev. Peter W. Clark, filling vital gaps in the history of the Methodist Church and its work among the black population of Louisiana. Her new biography, The Reverend Peter W. Clark: Sweet Preacher and Steadfast Reformer, covers the life of a man who filled assignments across the state in all but one of the Louisiana Methodist church districts. Clark led churches in the Acadiana, Alexandria, Baton Rouge, Lake Charles, Monroe, and New Orleans Districts.

Peter Clark served the Methodist Episcopal Church during the latter 19th century and early 20th century. This Church’s influence on the black community as an anti-slavery institution and its role in educating newly-freed blacks are noted. During the critical post-Reconstruction period, Clark built and developed churches in rural and urban Louisiana, established missions in New Orleans, and served as founding presiding elder (district superintendent) of the Lake Charles district of the Louisiana conference. The author describes each of Clark’s assignments from 1886-1914, nearly 30 years of service.

While the book details Clark’s achievements as a religious and community leader dealing with crises ranging from Mississippi River flooding to axe murders, it also focuses on the personal sacrifices Clark and his family made for what is now the United Methodist Church. Angella Current Felder, who wrote her own family’s story, Breaking Barriers, states of Clark’s biography that “It provides deep insight into the racial attitudes and economic conditions that prevailed in post-Reconstruction Louisiana.”

Adams emphasizes the religious commitment of Peter Clark, pointing out that he remained true to this calling despite multiple obstacles – difficult church assignments, family illnesses and deaths. Poverty placed his grandchildren Grace and Peter “Champ” Clark in servitude after the early death of their father. Yet, they also displayed Clark’s dedicated service to humanity and willingness to take on exceptional challenges. The lives of educator Grace Clark Parker and sports broadcaster Peter “Champ” Clark are presented in the “Legacy” section of the book.

Offering insight into the thoughts of the Reverend Peter W. Clark and his namesake grandson, Peter “Champ” Clark, the book features selected essays and poetry. Adams also documents the book well with end notes, a bibliography, and an extensive index. Photos of ten family members are presented, some from over a century ago.

For more details about the book, visit www.revpeterwclark.com or contact authorepadams@aol.com

The Reverend Peter W. Clark: Sweet Preacher and Steadfast Reformer
by Elaine Parker Adams
Hardcover | 6 x 9 in | 172 pages | ISBN 9781449797843
Softcover | 6 x 9 in | 172 pages | ISBN 9781449797836
E-Book | ISBN 9781449797829

Photo Caption: The late Rev. Peter W. Clark

Dramatizing Paul of Tarsus: Christian and Jewish Responses to PAULUS

Posted by Admin On October - 25 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

In anticipation of the world premiere of Motti Lerner’s PAULUS –an artistic interpretation of the latter years of Paul of Tarsus as imagined through a psychological lens– join Silk Road Rising for a conversation with scholars, clergy, and the playwright.

Held in the sanctuary at the First United Methodist Church at The Chicago Temple, this panel will be an interfaith conversation among Jews and Christians to place the figure of Paul within their respective traditions.

In PAULUS, a compassionate but wary 62-year-old Jesus and an egomaniacal Emperor Nero torment the ailing psyche of the Apostle Paul as he struggles to universalize monotheism against fierce opposition from a Jewish religious establishment threatened with spiritual extinction.  A scene from PAULUS will be performed as part of the evening’s program.

Panelists Include:
– Motti Lerner, playwright
– Margaret M. Mitchell, Dean of The University of Chicago Divinity School
– Nicholas Patricca, playwright and Professor Emeritus at Loyola University, Chicago
– Steven Philp, M.Div. candidate at The University of Chicago Divinity School and rabbinical student
– Rabbi Yehiel Poupko, Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago

Moderated by Cheryl Hamada of WTTW Channel 11

With welcoming remarks from Reverend Philip L. Blackwell, Senior Minister at the First United Methodist Church at the Chicago Temple, and Jamil Khoury, Founding Artistic Director of Silk Road Rising.

Silk Road Rising welcomes all people of any or no faith for a respectful and dynamic conversation about PAULUS.  The panel is free to attend and open to the public. Join us!

WHEN:  Monday, November 11, 2013 at 7pm

WHERE:  The Chicago Temple, 77 West Washington Street, Chicago, Illinois 60602

RSVP:  Reserve your Free Tickets online at www.silkroadrising.org or by calling 312-857-1234 x201

Pastor Lottie Woods Hall Honored – Went to jail with Dr. Martin Luther King

Posted by Admin On September - 9 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

‘Jailed with Dr. King, she continues to walks that spiritual walk’

By Rev. Harold E. Bailey

President of Probation Challenge/PCC Broadcast Network

As the United States celebrates the 50th Anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King and the March on Washington, I was privileged to be a special guest speaker/presenter for an appreciation service given in honor of Pastor Lottie Woods Hall. Hall resides in Greenville, South Carolina, and is the Servant Leader of The Intercessory Center.

History regarding this unsung woman of God, extends back to the days of her being jailed with the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., in the early civil rights movement. As a jailed detainee in Birmingham, Alabama, Lottie Woods, then a young student, led hymns and gospel music that would resonate throughout the facility. Incarcerated civil rights detainees (and others) joined in the joyful sounds of music, and as a result… the jail became a large gospel choir rendering hope, encouragement and faith to the movement.

Lottie Woods, then a young student-age-girl full of energy, had a sincere purpose and vision. Over the years she has maintained that energy, purpose and vision as an adult! More than often she reminds the people of her theme … “Standing in the gap and making up the hedge on behalf of the felt needs of people.” Much of her life has been a focus on helping others, especially those who could not assist themselves.

At this appreciation service, my seat was positioned where I could see the faces of attendees. I saw faces with tears as others were broadened  by a smile. I observed some who had not been apprised of Pastor Hall’s history… their faces were given to surprise! At that moment, I thought how wonderful it would be if people around the world would take just a moment to salute persons who have brought constructive change into their lives. And if one does not know who the bridge is that brought you over the burning sands of time, it would be wise to become educated to the facts. Ask questions … and demand serious answers!

In our African American struggle for justice, it would be nice to applaud those who made the supreme sacrifice of giving their blood, sweat and tears to the civil-right-struggle! We want to believe that most people know Black American Historical History – but I’m embarrassed to say that many African-Americans don’t, and now in Chicago, we are discovering what’s believed to be a conspiracy for the history not to be instructed! In that auditorium, there were young folk with amazement on their faces as to the compliments of this woman, but yet shocked that she, an honorable woman would be in their midst, their Servant Leader … their Pastor!

In observing the civil rights movement down through the corridors of time, it has been noted that many of those persons who traveled the freedom roads, few are left among us! Hall was spared the hand of folk who would seek the demise of people deemed as Colored/Negros/Black Folk. She was spared only but… by the grace of God!

How can we dismiss the fact that many freedom travelers were killed seeking to bring about the massive changes we enjoy today! Pastor Hall marched in that awareness cause that shook this nation – and wrote its history on the tables of time that shall never be forgotten!

We shudder to think, had such greats as  Dr. Martin L. King, Fred Shuttleworth, Andrew Young, Ralph Abernathy, Abraham and Calvin Woods (Lottie’s brothers), and others had not adhered to the voice of God and stepped up to the plate of injustice with justice, and with the mighty enduring strength imparted by God, what spiritual condition would African Americans be in today? We thank God for soldiers of the cross who marched fearlessly, knowing that their lives were in the hands of those who were bitter and disrespectful as to their merely being humans.

Today, we enjoy eating where we choose and spending dollars where we can get the best benefits. Today, contrary to many yesterdays, we have an opportunity to speak back to those who disrespect us! We should not forget those who opened their mouths and spoke back legally to the foul demons of injustices.

After a hard day of demonstrating, some would return to their homes, while others opted to gather in various churches to enjoy preaching, teaching, while exchanging various experiences encountered on that day.

Again, some were uncomfortable with marching! Some other civil rights adults and youth decided they would do more than just walk … they would take it further! Dr. Martin Luther King and an organized group gathered to march, they were decent and were in order… that group was treated rather rough by the powers-that-be, but they continued to march, arrested and went to jail. Many would sleep on the cold concrete floor, however their spirits were warmed in the embrace of their fellowship with God.

Young Lottie Woods, didn’t know at that time that God had selected her and others liken to her for a journey that would continue into eternity.

Hall speaks little about the famous marches and civil rights struggles she has encountered, but rather she teaches and preaches out of the depth of her experiences. She teaches not as conventional bodies of believers, but with biblical truth, and has no fear of spiritual reprisal! Her ministry to those who would dare listen, one would not believe that this humble person, soft spoken, but yet under the anointing of God, becomes a spiritual lightning rod!

If only our present youth across the United States would get excited regarding their standing up to challenges that are wrong. They have the fresh strength that’s needed in battle! God chooses youth because they are strong! Youth can march and speak openly today because of warrior of our yesterdays! Youth who have much to say, can positively express (rap) their views regarding today’s ill-issues because of the warriors of our yesterdays, there are few excuses. They can stand as the youth then stood… tall and didn’t take a ‘no positive change’ for an answer!

We salute Pastor Lottie Woods Hall, and others like her for being an example as to what God can do with our vessels – if we choose to let Him! Pastor Hall, the mighty woman of God, allowed without question the Almighty to take her to great heights and deeper depths that were unknown to her. Today, she offers no apology for the path she has traveled. She believes that her steps have been ordered by the Lord.

Pastor Hall, has preached for over 40-plus-years and serves as Servant Leader with ‘The Intercessory Center’ in Greenville, South Carolina, for 17-years. Hall traveled and recorded with the pioneering Harold Bailey Singers, out of Chicago. The noted group recorded for the Savoy label.

Pastor Lottie Woods Halls, born in Birmingham, Alabama, is privileged to have a family consisting of ministers, musicians, doctors, nurses, missionaries, and other professions.

In my conversation with many of the Woods family members, they all have professed their love affair with God.

Sitting quietly with great admiration at the appreciation service, was Pastor Pauline Franks, Storehouse of Faith Ministry Church, Greenville, South Carolina. Franks, who orchestrated the event along with members of The Intercessory Center, stated that Hall, “Is truly a women of God!” Franks declared Pastor Lottie Woods Hall to be her Pastor.

Serving as mistress of ceremonies, Pastor Franks invited people from around the country to attest to Pastor Hall’s ministerial dedication. Linda Singfield, from New York City, with credentials in the corporate world, raised her voice with strong testimony giving praises as to what God through Hall had done in her life. Stephen Hampton, principal at one of the High Schools in Greenville, noted how she had influenced his life. Youth and adult members of her Intercessory Center, took time to express their feelings of spiritual appreciation and growth under Hall’s leadership. A forceful body of three young ladies gave a praise-dance-rendition that brought the house to their feet. Leaders of the local ministerial alliance gave tributes. All who spoke and rendered acclaims were exceptional and well received.

It certainly appears that Pastor Hall has obeyed the voice of God, and in doing so, has planted the good seeds of righteousness … and is now reaping a good harvest in her season. Hall has proclaimed that there is much work to be done, and has now decided to return to her weekly Internet television broadcast, which travels the world 24/7 through the PCC Network/WWW.ProbationChallenge.org – The Truth Network. Because of immediate deaths and illness in her family, she temporarily relinquished the helm of her broadcast which was heard by millions around the globe.

Pastor Hall, recently received the noted ‘Portrait of Achievers’ Award from the Probation Challenge Organization in Chicago. She was applauded for her outstanding work in helping youth to get a hand-up in life. The 2nd Award was presented to Marshall Thompson of the world famous Chi-Lites.

Documentary of Pastor Lottie Woods Hall, ‘Women of Faith’, may be viewed at: WWW.ProbationChallenge.org – The Truth Network – 24/7 and On-Demand.———————–

Written by Rev. Harold E. Bailey, for Copyline Magazine

President, Probation Challenge, Inc. and The PCC Internet Broadcast Network.

WWW.ProbationChallenge.org The Truth Network

Written for Copyline Magazine

Photo Caption: Pastor Lottie Woods Hall (left) and Pastor Pauline Franks (right).

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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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