Empowerment Revival kicks off Wednesday
Published: Wednesday, January 15, 2014 at 3:28 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, January 15, 2014 at 3:28 p.m.
The 2014 Alachua County Empowerment Revival will feature a session dedicated to helping young black men learn about the nuances of the controversial "stand your ground" law and other issues affecting them, while also featuring a dynamic preacher who will serve as the main revivalist.
* What: The 4th annual Alachua County Empowerment Revival.
* When: 6 p.m. Jan. 22-24.
* Where: Mount Moriah Baptist Church, 718 SE 11th St.
* Information: Call 352-222-3699; for transportation, call 352-373-6350.
Leading the revival will be the Rev. Delores Cain, founder and pastor of Heritage Christian Community Baptist Church in Tampa. Services will be held Jan. 22-24 at Mount Moriah Baptist Church at 718 SE 11th St.
The highlight of the revival will be a panel discussion billed as "Boys Night Out" from 6-7:30 p.m. Jan. 23 featuring Gainesville attorney Chris Chestnut of the Chestnut Firm, with offices in Gainesville and around the state. Attorney Daryl Parks, one of the lawyers representing the family of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in the teen's shooting death in Sanford, had to cancel his participation because he will be out of the country. Parks is with Parks & Crum Attorneys at Law Firm in Tallahassee. The other panelists scheduled to be present will be Chief Tony Jones of the Gainesville Police Department; Judge Samuel Stafford of the Eighth Judicial Circuit of Florida; and Andre Washington, a law enforcement official in Lake City.
The revival also will feature the following:
* Jan. 22: 6-7 p.m., the Rev. Dr. Freeman N. Gallmon, pastor of Mount Moriah, followed by the Rev. Cain and the revival's Voices of Empowerment Choir.
* Jan. 23: 6-7:30 p.m., "Boys Night Out," followed by the Rev. Cain and the University of Florida Gospel Choir.
* Jan. 24: 6-7 p.m., the Rev. Kathy Long-Richardson, pastor of Greater Love and Faith Ministries in Gainesville, followed by the Rev. Cain and the Voices of Empowerment Choir.
Four years ago the Rev. Dr. Marie Herring, pastor of Dayspring Baptist Church, co-founded the revival with Leanetta McNealy, a member of Hope to the World Church in Gainesville, and Angela Terrell, the music minister at Johnson Chapel Baptist Church, also in Gainesville.
Rev. Herring said the "Boys Night Out" session is being held for young men and parents from around Alachua County to come out and learn about such topics as "stand your ground"; what parents can do to keep their children from going astray; how to behave when confronted by police; juvenile delinquency, and how the courts view education, behavior issues and truancy.
"We want to educate our children about society and the woes of society and how to combat those woes." Herring said.
She said the revival has always supported programs that help young people, such as the Reichert House Youth Academy for male boys and teens and Peaceful Paths, a domestic abuse network that offers emergency shelter and other assistance to women and children.
The revival is a year-round endeavor that consists of the Empowerment Revival Team of men and women, who do evangelistic work, such as training churches and organizations on how to go into the community and spread the word about Jesus Christ.
Member churches include: Dayspring, Emanuel Baptist Church, First Missionary Baptist Church, Greater Bethel AME Church, Greater Love & Faith, Hope to the World, Johnson Chapel, Mount Carmel Baptist Church, Mount Moriah, Mount Olive Primitive Baptist Church, New Macedonia Baptist Church, TOPROC Church of God in Christ, and Williams Temple Church of God in Christ, all in Gainesville; Greater New Hope Baptist Church in Bland, Mount Sinai Baptist Church in Orange Lake and New Hope United Methodist Church in Hawthorne.
Cain, the revivalist all three nights, said she hopes everyone attending the revival leave it with uplifted spirits.
"Most of all, I want people to be encouraged that there is still hope in Jesus and there are some things they can do to assist in their deliverance from whatever they are going through," Cain said. "I want them to be encouraged."