The Truth of Black History Will Set You Free


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A man stands in front of the Djingareyber mosque on February 4, 2016 in Timbuktu, central Mali. 
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by Rev. Dorothy S. Boulware, Word in Black

Alfred Street Baptist Church
Alfred Street Baptist Church (By APK – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0)

If you haven’t seen For Colored Girls in Black History, then you obviously were not present for morning worship on February 25 at Alfred Street Baptist Church in Alexandria, Virginia.

It was a sight to behold, with the familiar staging of Ntozake Shange’s choreopoem animated by the voices of Maya Angelou, Mahalia Jackson, Harriet Tubman and Madame C.J. Walker. And the preacher of the day was Dr. Kevin James, 19th president of Maurice Brown College, who told the story of the school’s beginning in 1881 through its loss of accreditation. He told how the school survived 20 years without accreditation, a miracle in itself, is now in a #HardReset and will soon break ground on campus for a $40 million phenomenal hotel. He attributed the school’s survival to the triple As: Almighty God, the best alumni in the world, and the African Methodist Episcopal Church. On April 26, 2022, the Board of the Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools gave Morris Brown College full accreditation. 

On its website, New Psalmist Baptist Church in Baltimore advertised a Black History Month University over three days in February, promising things “you don’t know.”


In Florida in response to recent laws banning the teaching of Black history it is reported that nearly 300 churches have incorporated Black history lessons into their worship, and into special programs for the entire community to enjoy.

On any given Sunday of February in any given year, the likes of Frederick Douglass, Sojourner Truth, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X speak volumes to those in attendance at Black churches around the country. Today, there is a pointed interest in telling people who have never heard it, and who may not be hearing it at the kitchen table as some of the elders heard it long ago. 

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