Our prayers are with the family of the late Representative John Lewis, Georgia Congressman for 30 years, civil rights foot soldier, and 2011 Presidential Medal of Freedom Honoree. Representative Lewis was one of the original “Freedom Riders“ who was brutally beaten and jailed 40 times while challenging segregation in America especially in Alabama and Mississippi. His courage, perseverance, commitment, and integrity made him a solid freedom warrior and the “Conscience of the U. S. Congress.” We join other Americans who admired, respected, and loved Representative John Lewis’ life and legacy by displaying purple ribbons on our doors. Known for his ability to cross the aisle and work with Republicans, Democrats, and Independents, “Creating the Beloved Community” and “Preserving our Democracy” were his battle cries. He loved this country and is considered to be one of the greatest Americans to dedicate his life to making our country better. It is better because he sacrificed and lived among us. We will miss his presence, courage, commitment and willingness to forgive, even those who beat and hospitalized him.
Our prayers are with the family of the late Rev. C. T. Vivian, 2013 Presidential Medal of Freedom Honoree, and key adviser to the late Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who transitioned July 17th at the age of 95. His civil rights work stretched back more than six decades including challenging Selma, AL sheriff Jim Clark, and marching across the Edmund Pettus Bridge. As SCLC president in 2012, he encouraged young people to act strategically as they advocated for justice and equality. We will miss him as he is remembered as one of the people in the Movement who had the most insight, wisdom, integrity and dedication. Dr. King gave him the title of “the Best Preacher in America.” A beautiful private memorial was held Thursday, July 23rd in Atlanta.
Our prayers are with the family of the late former Fayette Mayor Charles Evers who transitioned Wednesday, July 22nd. Evers, 97 years old, was the older brother of Medgar Wiley Evers both of whom were born in Decatur. During the 60’s and early 70’s, Evers was a trailblazer and active in the civil rights movement as he stepped in for his slain brother. He served as State Conference NAACP Field Director, and owned several businesses including a radio station. Memorial arrangements are incomplete and Collins Funeral Home of Jackson is in charge.
We are sorry to learn of the transition of Mrs. Ethel Gordon who passed Tuesday, July 21st. Memorial services will be held at a later time. Evans Memorial Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements.
Please continue to remember our readers who are facing health challenges, namely, Mrs. Stella Smith, Mrs. Addie Russell, Mrs. Fannie Bradford, Mrs. Rosie Odom Harris, Mrs. Flo Chambers, Mrs. Kitty Colbert, Mrs. Lovie Bland, Mrs. Faye Bland Holifield Gray, and Elder Odee Akins who is recuperating at home.
Happy belated birthday to U.S. House of Representatives Majority Whip Jim Clyburn who celebrated his 80th birthday Tuesday, July 21st. We enjoyed the celebration via virtual connection and also enjoyed hearing from Atlanta Mayor Bottoms.
A belated birthday greeting to Mrs. Connie Wash who celebrated her birthday Friday, July 24th and enjoyed spending social distancing time with her family. Belated birthday greetings to Mr. Andrew Crudup who celebrated his birthday Saturday, July 25th by spending time with his family including daughter, Shatika, who traveled home to join the social distancing celebration.
We enjoyed Sunday Mass at St. Michael Catholic Church where Pastor Roberto Mena delivered the homily and reminded us to review our priorities during this pandemic. He asked, “How can we thank Jesus for his loving mercy to us?”
Lynch Chapel U. M. Church Pastor Shirley Wilder delivered a beautiful sermon entitled “Come Down from your Hilltop.” She asked that we be safe and wear masks and to pray for all elected officials. During this virtual message where she referenced Jonah, she highlighted the following: Jonah wanted God to help him only; God wants us to repent; God has enough love for all of us and there is no need to be selfish; You are invited to come down from your Hilltop and love and forgive others; If things don’t go our way, we want to leave God; God shows great love; What about our relationship with others when we are on the Hilltop? Before we get too deep, seek God and ask for his wisdom; Take time out to be with the Lord; If God is for us, who can be against us; We have been called to serve; Are we serving or are we judging? We must confess our sins and we must forgive others; and the Lord gives and the Lord can take away. In closing, she moved us by singing “His Eye Is on The Sparrow.”
During Drive-Through Services at Little Rock M. B. Church, Pastor Sheldon Thomas delivered a challenging and inspirational message entitled “I Am New and Improved.” Prior to the message and during his prayer, he petitioned prayers for all as we face this pandemic and special prayers for governmental and religious leaders and first responders. In sharing his message, he stated that 2020 has made him new and improved and the challenges have changed his life, priorities and thoughts. He challenged us to reflect on the following: If we are a work in progress, we become new and improved; We are valuable servants of God and that is why the devil lurks around; God roughs us up to grow us up; As God did with Jonah and Job, the Lord has to correct us with a round of corrections; Things that transpired in your life have changed because of prayer; God allows things to come into our lives to try our faith; Trust God even when you can’t trace God; Dare not to be sidetracked by people who are not on track — Why stress yourself? — We are who God says we are; and Adversity knocks on everybody’s door — treat it like it is an unwelcomed guest — shake it off, stay focused and stay on the mission. He closed by reminding us that we don’t need everybody’s approval nor do we need a large audience, just please God.
Happy birthday greetings to babies born during the last 2 days in July, namely Everlean Wansley, Margaret Swinney, and Peggy Sanders (30), and Linda Suwinski, Erica Tucker, Rev. Jessie Sanders, Reggie Odom and Cyndi Roberts (31). Happy birthday greetings to babies born during the first week in August, namely, Opal Jones, Jamie Patrick, Caneshia Bogan, and Todd Johnson (1), Denise Powell and Teresa Lofton (2), Barbara Ware (3), Mrs. Addie Russell and Desmone Dodson (4), and Artavius Turner, Brandy Brown, Nautica Moore, and Betty Harrison (5).
Answer to Quiz Teaser #578: Dr. Bobbye G. Cooper, Tougaloo College graduate, biology instructor and choir director at Hawkins High School, was honored by having a building named in his honor at Hinds Community College. Congratulations to Mrs. Susie Jackson Boyd for providing the correct answer.
Quiz Teaser # 579: Who was the first African American elected official in Scott County?