An Introduction to African American Church History in the Commonwealthof Virginia

Author : Joyce A. Russell
Paperback : 79 pages
Imprint : PENDIUM
Language : English


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The very first known church congregation of African Americans was founded in 1758 in Mecklenburg County, Virginia. Yet this fact has received very little attention from scholars. Jerusalem! An Introduction to African American Church History in the Commonwealth of Virginia fills that void while, at the same time, calling attention to historic figures such as Lott Carey, Nat Turner, and James Solomon Russell, all of whom were born in the Commonwealth and all of whom became preachers.

At the center of Jerusalem! is Jerusalem Church, a small African American congregation of approximately 100 members. Jerusalem is distinctive for being the first African American church in Mecklenburg County to acquire membership in the United Church of Christ, a predominately White denomination known for its inclusiveness, its advocacy for justice, and its activism. The UCC at one time was the denomination of poet Phillis Wheatley, media mogul Oprah Winfrey, and President Barack Obama.

Jerusalem! concludes with an academic essay on human trafficking, also known as modern-day slavery.

Joyce A. Russell
Joyce A. Russell is a graduate of Bennett College for Women, North Carolina Central University, and Emory University, where she received the Ph.D. for her interdisciplinary work in African American literature, women's literature, and hermeneutics. Dr. Russell's publications have appeared in various scholarly journals, among them, the Western Journal of Black Studies, the Journal for the Advancement of Educational Research, and Issues: A Journal of Opinion. She has also authored numerous book chapters. Dr. Russell is an African Americanist and an Africana Womanist who underpins her work by philosophical thought. Dr. Russell is also a public speaker who lectures on unsung heroes and ("she"roes). In 1996, founded the Anna J. Cooper Society on the campus of St. Augustine's University. Recently, in South Carolina she delivered a lecture on Father Divine, the colorful and controversial preacher of the Harlem Renaissance. Dr. Russell, already an ordained minister, recently enrolled in the Pastoral Leadership Development program of the United Church of Christ. During her first week of studies she attended a retreat in Durham, North Carolina, where she, for the first time in her life, walked a labyrinth. A professor in the English Department of Fayetteville State University, Dr. Russell is the mother of Dr. William Russell Robinson, a professor in the Mass Communications Department of North Carolina Central University, and she is the grandmother of William Russell Robinson Jr. op