A faith-based nonprofit champion of social justice, holy activism and civil righteousness will commemorate Juneteenth, Saturday, June 19 and, at the same time, shine a light on modern-day slavery.
From Ferguson, Missouri to Fredericksburg, Virginia, the nonprofit Civil Righteousness is offering, food, fellowship, music and dance to mark Juneteenth, the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of slavery’s end in the United States.
A banquet in Ferguson, called Let Freedom Ring, will honor the day that slaves in Galveston, Texas learned of their freedom. Another event in Fredericksburg will shine a light on the long road to freedom for victims of sexual exploitation.
Ferguson-based Civil Righteousness is spreading a Texas-sized table at Ferguson First Baptist Church, where 250 invited guests are invited to share a meal and conversation – even if some can’t afford the price of admission.
Let Freedom Ring is sponsored by Civil Righteousness, which is committed to reconciliation and restorative justice through spiritual, cultural and economic renewal. Its Pray on MLK events inspire people around the globe to gather on streets and monuments named after the preacher and civil rights leader, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Pastor Jonathan Tremaine Thomas, who founded Civil Righteousness, explains the vision for the table and other Let Freedom Ring gatherings on June 19.
“At the beginning of this year, I felt really strongly that the Lord was extending an invitation not just to me – but to the church in America – to build the table of the Lord, to build America’s table. The phrase specifically was: ‘I want you to build America’s table,’” says Thomas.
In Matthew 22, Jesus reveals the kingdom of heaven’s connection to the church. He likens it to a wedding feast. Citizens of the kingdom are obligated to invite everyone to the table. The chapter also talks about being properly dressed.
“I think what’s been happening in the culture with identity politics, virtue signaling, various movements, and different agendas there’s really an intense temptation for us to be dressed in our political allegiances. Or to be dressed in our ethnic identity or our cultural experiences or preferences,” Thomas says.
The Lord is setting a table for his family, and he’s preparing a feast for the church to invite people. “He wants to set the table, you know, the communion table, the negotiation table, the mediation table and the innovation table,” says Thomas.
In Ferguson, where a white police officer shot to death an 18-year-old black man, Michael Brown, in 2014, Civil Righteousness is setting a custom-made, 500-foot table with a catered meal for invited guests.
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SOURCE: Assist News Service, by Steve Rees