"Hold to God's Unchanging Hand"
A line from a great hymn of the church says that "time is filled with great transition naught on earth unmoved can stand build your hopes on things eternal hold to God's unchanging hand." This is an appropriate song for us today because we are living in times of swift transition and during times like this we need to hold onto God's Unchanging hand.
It seems that every week, we learn of some new mass shooting including the recent tragic mass shooting of 6 college students in Santa Barbara, California, the killing of two police officers and 3 others in Las Vegas, Nevada and a shooting at a high school in Oregon just a couple of days ago. These shootings again highlight the urgent need for the US Congress to pass tighter gun control legislation as soon as possible.
This past month also marked the 50th Anniversary of the War on Poverty and Lyndon Baines Johnson's Great Society. As a result of these 1960's initiatives major legislation was passed including fair housing laws, and the Voting Right Act of 1965, and it is unfortunate but many of the gains that resulted from the passage of Great Society programs -- including the Voting Rights Act -- are now under attack.
At the same time, the reality is that racism has not ended -- as highlighted by the recent racist remarks of NBA Clippers' owner Donald Sterling -- and poverty is still an all too present reality. Furthermore, the White House recently released a document showing that climate change is much worse than we imagined (click here for more information), and the US Congress is doing nothing to address this pressing issue.
All of these issues including several states' failure to expand healthcare coverage to our most vulnerable citizens point to the critical importance of the upcoming Midterm elections and your need to attend the upcoming 53rd PNBC Annual Session to be held August 3 - 8 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida (details below).
PNBC is partnering with the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) Chaired by Rep. Marcia Fudge (OH) to highlight the importance of the vote and the significant role that we as persons of faith must play in the election. We encourage you to support the CBC Voting Rights Bill and to partner with us to get out the vote. Here is a link to an important faith community 2014 Voting Tool Kit (click here). Please look it over and put it to use.
I am saddened by the transition of several of our saints in the past couple of weeks including actress and activist Ruby Dee, Dr. Maya Angelou, Dr. Vincent Harding and my Uncle and Aunt Dea. James Lewis and Deaconess Mary Lewis in Virginia. We hold all of their memories dear and as we too are on our journey to Mt. Zion, we will do our best to keep the fight for social justice and freedom alive and to keep holding onto God's unchanging hand until that day when we see Jesus face to face.
Dr. Carroll A. Baltimore, Sr.
2014 ANNUAL SESSION IN FT. LAUDERDALE
Make plans now to attend the 53rd Annual session of the Progressive National Baptist Convention August 3 - August 9 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida!
During this year's session we will celebrate the legacy of our 19th President the Rev. Dr. Carroll A. Baltimore, Sr. in "Securing our Future" as a people of Service, Peace, Fellowship and Progress.
We will highlight PNBC's partnership with President Obama's Administration and address pressing social justice issues including the 20014 midterm election, state Stand Your Ground Laws and the need to address gun control, immigration reform and Climate Change.
We will also hear a line-up of inspirational speakers including the Rev. Bernice E. King, the daughter of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and C.E.O of the King Center (who will address PNBC on Tuesday's youth night), Dr. John Kinney, Dean of the Samuel DeWitt Proctor School of Theology of Virginia Union University, the Reverend Dr. Alyn E. Waller, Pastor of Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church in Philadelphia,PA and key Obama Administration Officials.
The annual session will also include a special welcoming worship service on Sunday, August 3, featuring Dr. Alphonso Jackson, Jr, Pastor of Second Baptist Church, Miami, FL and a "PNBC Family Night" on Wednesday, August 5.
The PNBC Family will feature the nationally acclaimed "Mama's Girls" Play. Featuring a dynamic performance from a spirit-filled cast, this family friendly play addresses the struggles and hardships of care-giving, and provides information that can help those taking care of their loved ones. Mama's Girls takes you on an emotional journey as these five sisters come together to face the reality of their mother's declining health. This life changing production will have you laughing, crying, and singing along.
During the session we will also recognize pastors of distinction who have served in the Pastoral ministry for 50 years or more. (If you know of a pastor who fits in this category please send their name and info to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than June 30).
(Click Here for the Schedule-At-A-Glance)
You don' t want to miss the PNBC 2014 Annual Session! Please book your reservation today as the hotels are filling-up quickly. The Headquarters Hilton Hotel is now completely booked, but we still have reservations available at the nearby Renaissance Hotel and a recently added Hyatt Regency Hotel (see below).
RENAISSANCE FORT LAUDERDALE CRUISE PORT HOTEL (Click here to make your reservation)1617 Southeast 17th St, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33316. Main: 954-626-1752.
HYATT REGENCY PIER SIXTY-SIX 2301 SE 17th Street, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33316
Toll-free 888-421-1442 or non-toll-free 402-592-6464. When calling, refer to PNBC or Click Here for Reservation.
2014 ST. JUDE SUNDAY OF HOPE CAMPAIGN
The Progressive National Baptist Convention, Inc. has partnered once again with the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital to fight against life-threatening childhood diseases by asking member congregations to host a St. Jude Sunday of Hope.
St. Jude Sunday of Hope events can take place on any Sunday between April and June in churches nationwide.
Through this program, congregations worldwide will unite as a body of believers to help children suffering from pediatric cancer, sickle cell and other deadly diseases. PNBC pastors will ask their congregations to make a love offering in honor of the patients and families of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.
Click Here for More Information
"Dr. Maya Angelou & the Power of Listening & Love"
Pastor Kip Banks, Sr.
Dr. Maya Angelou passed away on Thursday, May 28, 2014 and as President Barack Obama said, she was truly a phenomenal woman who also was a first-rate author, poet, civil rights activist, playwright, actress, director, composer, singer and dancer among many other things.
What is it that made Maya special? I think there are two things in particular that stand out.
First of all, she was the rare person who knew how to listen. She honed this skill as a young child at the age of six, when after a traumatic experience of being raped, and feeling that it was her voice that caused someone to kill the man who raped her, she didn't speak for nearly five years.
The Bible tell us "Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry" (James 1:18).
Yet, we too often we reverse this and we're quick to speak and slow to listen. We would do well, however, to be like Dr. Angelou and to learn the art of listening and in particular to God.
Indeed, Dr. Angelou's final words inscribed on her Twitter account were, "Listen to yourself and in that quietude you might hear the voice of God."
Dr. Maya Angelou was also a woman who radiated the power of God's love.
A MAN? (excerpt from the Worker)
"COURAGE ENABLES US TO CONQUER FEAR"
When you look at what makes a man a man in our modern society today, it can be pretty discouraging.
Men are judged by their physique, their looks, how much money they have, their possessions, their success and their job (career).
But when it comes to the Word of God, there is a basic fundamental virtue that defines manliness.
There is a trait that I think distinguishes a man most distinctively and that trait is courage.
Courage is the strength of will that enables us to conquer fear.
It often happens that we know what we ought to do,
but we are afraid to do it because of the consequences we may suffer as a result.
Courage ensures that we will have the firmness of mind and will to overcome our fear and do what is right and good regardless of the difficulties.
Nelson Mandela lived these words.
He was not afraid of the life threatening consequences
of opposing and standing by the right.
He also showed courage by his lack of bitterness
over his harsh treatment while imprisoned on Robins Island.
Nelson Mandela said, "I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear."
The fear of man bringth a snare; but whoso putteth his trust in the Lord shall be safe. Proverbs 29:25
Click Here for More From The Worker!
June 16 - 20
Southwest Region June 23 -27 Oakland, CA
Eastern Region Congress
August 3 - 9 Fort Lauderdale, Fl