Dear Church Family and Friends:
Today is Juneteenth, the annual celebration of the end of slavery in the United States. It is the remembrance of that moment on June 19, 1865, when 250,000 enslaved Black Americans in Galveston Texas were told they were free. It was two and a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation had gone into effect on January 1, 1863.
While Juneteenth is remembered as the “end of slavery,” history has made it clear that freedom from slavery did not mean freedom from racism, bigotry, and white supremacy. So, on this Juneteenth, let us all pause to honor and celebrate a symbolic milestone in the United States, and the manifold accomplishments and contributions that Black Americans have contributed to our nation in the face of adversity. Let us learn our histories, particularly the stories of Black America too often obscured and overlooked because of anti-Black bias. And then let us act. For it has been made clear that now more than ever is the time to stand up, speak out, and assertively work to end injustices.
We are pleased to offer this service in commemoration of Juneteenth. With thanks to our church members who participated in this service: Harold Bunton, Linda Spears-Bunton, Greg Jackson, Charmyn Kirton, Ruth Nuñez, Dennis Rodrigues, and Greg Taylor. And, to John Graham and Elena Korallis who assisted with the video.
Grace and peace,