150 Years of Free­dom

Rev. Low­ery to speak Dec. 30, at Spring­field Bap­tist for Eman­ci­pa­tion Procla­ma­tion Ser­vice

The Covington News - - THE SECOND FRONT - STAFF RE­PORTS news@cov­news.com

Civil Rights icon and Pres­i­den­tial Medal of Free­dom re­cip­i­ent Rev. Dr. Joseph E. Low­ery will be the key­note speaker at the Sesqui­cen­ten­nial Eman­ci­pa­tion Procla­ma­tion Com­mu­nity Wor­ship Ser­vice hosted at Spring­field Bap­tist on Dec. 30, at 4:30 p.m.

The ser­vice, spon­sored by PACT (Pas­toral Accountability for Covenant Truth), an in­ter­de­nom­i­na­tional as­so­ci­a­tion of about 20 Rock­dale pas­tors, is a cel­e­bra­tion of the 150th an­niver­sary of the Eman­ci­pa­tion Procla­ma­tion is­sued by Pres­i­dent Abra­ham Lin­coln on Jan. 1, 1863, and the even­tual eman­ci­pa­tion of ap­prox­i­mately 4 mil­lion slaves in the U.S. at the time.

Spring­field Bap­tist Pas­tor Eric Lee said, “It’s a bless­ing to be able to bring him to our com­mu­nity once again. We’re ex­cited about him coming.

We would hope that a cel­e­bra­tion such as this would be con­sid­ered an Amer­i­can cel­e­bra­tion. With the movie “Lin­coln” coming out at the same time as the Sesqui­cen­ten­nial Eman­ci­pa­tion Procla­ma­tion cel­e­bra­tion, it’s a fruit­ful time for us to talk to each other.

“This is a time when we’re still po­lit­i­cally di­vided. Rock­dale is a re­flec­tion of what we’re see­ing on the na­tional level.”

“A part of this di­vide is ex­ac­er­bated by the fact that we don’t talk to each other. We’re not in com­mu­ni­ca­tion with each other,” said Lee. “We need to be able to un­der­stand one an­other.”

Pas­tor Al­dren Sadler Sr., a mem­ber of PACT, said the 1.5-year-old net­work had done a few smaller events but felt the 150th an­niver­sary of the Eman­ci­pa­tion Procla­ma­tion was a mile­stone.

Low­ery co-founded the South­ern Chris­tian Lead­er­ship Con­fer­ence in 1957 with his friend and col­league Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Be­fore that, Low­ery, who was born in Huntsville, Ala., headed the Alabama Civic Af­fairs As­so­ci­a­tion, the move­ment that led to the de­seg­re­ga­tion of buses and pub­lic ac­com­mo­da­tions.

He was hailed as the “Dean of the Civil Rights Move­ment” upon his re­ceipt of the NAACP’s “Life­time Achieve­ment Award.”

In Au­gust 2009, Low­ery was awarded the Pres­i­den­tial Medal of Free­dom, the na­tion’s high­est civil­ian honor.

Prior to that, on Jan. 20, 2009, Low­ery gave the Bene­dic­tion at Pres­i­dent Barack Obama’s in­au­gu­ra­tion as the 44th Pres­i­dent of the United States.

The Sesqui­cen­ten­nial Eman­ci­pa­tion Procla­ma­tion Com­mu­nity Wor­ship Ser­vice, a joint ser­vice, will be hosted by the Spring­field Bap­tist Church at 1877 Iris Drive, on Sun­day, Dec. 30, at 4:30 p.m. All are in­vited and ad­mis­sion is free. The doors will open at 4 p.m.


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