Feb 21st

Vernon Johns

By Victory

Dr. Patrick L. Cooney and Henry W. Powell, in The Life and Times of the Prophet Vernon Johns: The Father of the Civil Rights Movement, wrote that the three greatest pushes for civil rights in the U.S. — Adam Clayton Powell Jr.’s campaign against Jim Crow in the North, the 1954 Supreme Court decision Brown vs. Board of Education and MLK’s fight against segregation in the South — were all influenced by one person: Vernon Johns.

 

Johns (1892-1965) was Dr. King’s predecessor as pastor at Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, Ala. and was a mentor of Ralph Abernathy, Wyatt Walker and others in the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. His whole demeanor reflected his fight against class inequality in both the black and white communities.

 

Johns thought that whoever controlled the money controlled the overall society. From this insight, based this on teachings from the bible, the pastor stressed that blacks needed to own more businesses. He’s quoted as saying, “I noticed that some of you noted that I had neglected to wear shoe strings. Well, I’ll start wearing them when Negroes start producing them.”

 

Feb 20th

Alexander Crummell

By Victory

Alexander Crummell (1819-1898) was an American scholar, an Episcopalian minister, and founder of the American Negro Academy, the first major learned society for black Americans. He was also an early advocate of African-American self-help.

 

Education — progressive education — was an important part of Crummell’s youth. Born to the son of an African prince and a free mother, he attended an interracial school, an institute run by abolitionists and had private tutors. In 1839, Crummell was denied admission to the General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church because of his race, so he studied theology privately and became an ordained Episcopalian minister in the Diocese of Massachusetts in 1844 at the age of 25.

 

In 1873, after spending some 20 years in Liberia as a missionary, Crummell came to Washington, D.C., where he was appointed “missionary at large of the colored people.” Seven years later, he founded and served as the first pastor of Saint Luke’s Episcopal Church. Crummell, whose vision was that the black church should be a place not only of worship but also of social service, encouraged black ministers in Washington to establish charitable institutions for their race.

 

Late in life, he taught at Howard University and founded the American Negro Academy, which promoted the publication of scholarly work dealing with African-American culture and history. Crummell emphasized African-American self-help and the need for practical education — and he did this independent of Booker T. Washington.

 

Feb 19th

Mordecai Johnson

By Victory

Mordecai Johnson (1890-1976) was the first black president of Howard University where he served for 34 years. Prior to his career in education, Johnson studied at Harvard and Rochester Theological Seminary where he was the first black graduate.

 

During his time at the head of Howard, Johnson was renowned for amassing an esteemed faculty of African-American scholars. The NAACP also awarded Johnson its highest honor for his ability to secure federal and private funding for the construction of new buildings and to secure the long-term financial security of the school. He also was known for frequently using his leadership position as a platform to speak out against racism, segregation and discrimination.

 

Feb 15th

Adam Clayton Powell, Jr.

By Victory

In Black Power Between Heaven and Hell, Tony Chapelle wrote, “Adam Clayton Powell Jr. was the equivalent of the rap group Public Enemy, the protest politician Jesse Jackson, and the Congressional Black Caucus all in one.”

 

Powell (1908-1972) was born in New Haven, Conn. to a minister, who headed the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem, N.Y., a church he would lead himself beginning in 1937.

 

In 1945, Powell was elected as a Democrat to the House of Representatives, representing the 22nd congressional district, which included Harlem. He was the first black Congressman from New York, and, as one of only two black Congressmen at the time, Powell challenged the informal ban on black representatives using Capitol facilities by taking black constituents to dine with him in the “whites only” House restaurant.(www.huffingtonpost.com)

 

 

Feb 15th

18 School Shootings in the First 45 Days of 2018

By Victory

 

None of us wants to believe that someone we love has the ability to cause bodily harm, let alone death to anyone, but we must do so. So when you see that family member or friend always speaking of harming someone, and has access to a fire arm please bring it to the attention of the proper authorities. Please understand doing this does not mean you are sending your loved ones to jail. The police and the justice system is well trained to understand when someone needs help and does not fall under the criminal category. If you are not comfortable with dealing with law enforcement please try to talk them into getting counseling. Someone who is always angry or talking about hurting someone is not right, and should be given a lot of attention. Don’t just assume that, “that’s just John being John.”  Remember just like all have a responsibility to protect our loved one we also have a responsibility to protect everyone else from our loved ones, and by doing so we are protecting our loved ones. If talk to the family and friends of any of the suspects in any mass shooting that has taken place in this country, the majority of them wish they would have said something beforehand. My heart and prayers goes out to everyone effected by the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fl. I love you and God bless you all.

 

Feb 12th

Thomas A. Dorsey

By Victory

Thomas Dorsey (1901-1960) was an American pianist, arranger and composer who is considered to be one of the most important figures in the development and popularization of Gospel Music.

 

A prolific composer, Dorsey spent his early career playing and singing the blues. However, after undergoing a spiritual conversion and experiencing the tragic death of his wife and child, Dorsey forsook popular music and focused his work on religious music like the song, “Precious Lord, Take My Hand.” He toured for many years with Mahalia Jackson and penned hits that would usher in the popularity of many of the era’s biggest stars including Sister Rosetta Thorpe and Elvis Presley.(www.huffingtonpost.com)

 

Feb 8th

Benjamin Elijah Mays

By Victory

An ordained Baptist minister, Benjamin Elijah Mays (1894-1984) was a career educator, serving at various times as a Professor at South Carolina State College, Dean of the Howard University School of Religion, and President of Morehouse College. He also served as the first black president of the Atlanta school board.

 

Mays was a frequent and vocal critic of segregation and racism in America. He was an important early mentor to many of the civil rights leaders who were products of the black colleges including Martin Luther King, Jr. Additionally, his written work and widespread respect in the academic community helped to coalesce support for the civil rights movement among the nation’s intellectual elite.(www.huffingtonpost.com

 

Feb 4th

Howard Thurman

By Victory

The long-time Dean of Chapels and Theology at Morehouse College and Boston University, Howard Thurman (1899-1981) was a major proponent of nonviolent protest as a primary tactic in the movement for black civil rights. While leading a delegation to South Asia in 1936, Thurman spoke at length with Mahatma Gandhi about his experiences with nonviolence. This conversation would have a strong influence on Thurman’s work for the entirety of his career. His seminal work, the 1949 book Jesus and the Disinherited, would be a major influence Martin Luther King, Jr. and other black religious leaders.(www.huffingtonpost.com)

Feb 3rd

James Cone

By Victory

Called to the clergy at age 16, James Cone (born 1938) has dedicated his life to confronting racism in the United States through his experiences in ministry, education, and authorship. His work largely focused on analyzing the compatibility of Christianity with the multiple philosophies of the black civil rights movement.

 

“For me, the burning theological question was, how I can reconcile Christianity and Black Power, Martin Luther King, Jr.’s idea of nonviolence, and Malcolm X’s ‘by any means necessary’ philosophy?” — Black Theology and Black Power by James H. Cone

 

In 1970, Cone published his landmark work, A Black Theology of Liberation, taking a radical new look at Christianity through the pained lens of the oppressed black community in America. (www.huffingtonpost.com)

 

Feb 2nd

Bishop William J. Seymour

By Victory

From 1906 to 1909, William J. Seymour preached his radical form of Christianity from a run-down building in Los Angeles. His church was the host to thousands of visiting ministers, many of whom incorporated Seymour’s teachings about experiencing the Holy Spirit when they returned to their own congregations. The event became known as the Azusa Street Revival and is largely credited as the origin point for the modern Pentecostal or charismatic movement.