Archive for July, 2013

Priests for Life asks Legal Group to Pose Questions to Medical Examiner re Gosnell Babies

Thursday, July 18th, 2013

Priests for Life

Philadelphia, PA — In anticipation of the public prayer vigil that Priests for Life will hold in front of the Medical Examiner’s office tomorrow morning, a letter is being sent this morning to the Philadelphia Medical Examiner by an attorney representing the Alliance Defending Freedom. The letter, sent at the request of Priests for Life and other leaders who have joined this effort, demands that the Medical Examiner’s office tell the public what is being done with the bodies of the children discovered in Kermit Gosnell’s clinic, and that the Medical Examiner release the bodies for a proper burial.

“We have made our request very public over the last few months; now we want public answers,” explained Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, who had a widely-publicized service in May during which the babies were given names. “We intend to have a public funeral for these babies, and thousands of people have likewise expressed to the Medical Examiner their desire to see this happen. And they do not understand the reason for the delay.”

The letter from Alliance Defending Freedom states in part,

“[T]he public must be told where the bodies currently are. This is particularly relevant where the unclaimed victims are related to such a public, notorious criminal prosecution, followed closely by the media in all respects….

“Proper burial is the right thing to do, for the human dignity of the babies themselves, for the healing of post-abortive women, and for the future and conscience of Philadelphia and the nation….This is what a civilized society does with its dead.”

The letter has been sent also on behalf of the ministries that Priests for Life operates for the healing of those who have experienced abortion, that is, Rachel’s Vineyard and the Silent No More Awareness Campaign. The letter goes on to state,

“Post-abortive women are often left with intense, unresolved grief even decades after their abortion. Just as anyone who has experienced a pregnancy loss, what little comfort is available often comes in the form of a memorial. Memorials following pregnancy loss are supported by the Obama Administration, the Mayo Clinic, and the March of Dimes, among others. Whole ministries are devoted to providing post-abortive women, men, and families with the memorial – and healing – they never had, and affirming their grief; these include Signatories Silent No More Awareness and Rachel’s Vineyard.”

Tomorrow morning (Friday, July 19), a prayer vigil will be held in front of the Medical Examiner’s office at 321 University Ave from 10 to 11am Eastern Time. The public is invited to participate. Connect with the event on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/events/566133280094581/. For additional information, and to pray in union with this event, see www.GosnellBabies.com.

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Fr. Pavone Louds Texas Gov. Perry’s Signing of Pro-Life Low

Thursday, July 18th, 2013

Priests for Life

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: July 18, 2013

Contact: Leslie Palma
347-286-7277

Staten Island, NY – Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, issued the following statement today in support of Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s signing of a bill to prohibit almost all abortions after five months of pregnancy, regulate abortion clinics as ambulatory surgical centers, and require abortionists to have local hospital admitting privileges.

“Governor Rick Perry and the Texas legislature have done what they were elected to do, that is, safeguard the well-being of Texans. The new law Governor Perry signs today will advance the protection of women from the unscrupulous practices of abortionists, and the protection of children from the deadly weapons of those same abortionists. Those who were so vociferous in their opposition to this law are on the wrong side of morality and of history.”

“We at Priests for Life will continue to expose the horrors committed by Texas abortionists like Douglas Karpen. This law will make that task much easier.”

Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org.

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Dr. Alveda C. King: Judge by Content of Character, not Skin Color or Hoodies

Wednesday, July 17th, 2013

MLK in Hoodie

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 17, 2013

Contact: Leslie Palma
Leslie@priestsforlife.org
(347) 286-7277

While I salute the passion and creativity of artist Nikkolas Smith in reference to the image of MLK wearing a hoodie, I feel compelled to cry “foul, shame on you” to the media moguls and civil rights legends who want to stir up a controversy where there is none. I am not angered by the artistic expression. I am just plain hurt and saddened to see the message of my uncle Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. reduced to a debate over an article of clothing. I would love to talk with artist Nikkolas about my uncle.

“Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will.”
– Martin Luther King, Jr. “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” April 16, 1963

My grandfather was always a meticulously dressed and well groomed man. He encouraged and actually insisted that his family follow his lead, because he was grooming us all to represent Jesus, our family and our community. Uncle M. L. and Daddy grew up to become leaders and did their best to honor and respect their father’s teachings. Like all humans, they sometimes fell short, but not for lack of trying.

I am no way suggesting that hoodies are a bad thing. The young folks in my family wear them. They are actually handy o\in the rain. Yet there are other ways to remember Dr. King. Perhaps most importantly that way would be found in his sermons and letters.

“We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.”
– Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Speech in St. Louis, Missouri, March 22, 1964

As to the controversy, George Zimmerman seemingly never explored the content of Trayvon Martin’s character. Rather he identified and profiled Travon Martin according to Trayvon’s choice of attire which was a hoodie. We as African-Americans should never be racially profiled. We must advocate as Martin Luther King, Jr. advocated; for defining ourselves by the content of our character rather than according to the color of our skin or choice of attire. This should be the standard for every ethnic group, every family and every individual.

Unfortunately, the trial was about finding reasonable doubt in a murder case; as to what happened the night Zimmerman shot Trayvon. Reasonable doubt was established, and thus human justice was served in a human court of law. Yet, was everyone so concerned about serving man’s legal system that we forgot to serve God?

Sadly, the legal aspects of the trial were not about whether or not George Zimmerman racially profiled Trayvon Martin. That issue now becomes a matter of civil rather than criminal law. The criminal legal process was not about hoodies and candy. It wasn’t even about smoking marijuana. By the way, two United States Presidents admit to having smoked marijuana as young men, one says he inhaled and one says he didn’t.

This leads me to wonder what kind of man Trayvon Martin would have become if he had been allowed to live.

By observing his parents during the time of his tragic and fatal shooting and this trial, I am sure that Trayvon would have turned out just fine. His parents have called for justice and peace during their suffering and loss throughout this entire ordeal. My prayers continue to go out to them.

In the final analysis, Trayvon Martin represented humanity, life and purpose as ordained by God for all persons, in and out of the womb; and he deserved not to be profiled; but rather regarded as a precious soul.

Trayvon wore a hoodie not because he was black, but because it was his choice of style for teens in this time in our society. His clothing should never have been a factor in defining him.

As Martin Luther King, Jr. was called to greatness, you, I and yes Trayvon Martin and George Zimmerman were called to greatness, purpose and the right to live in America. The difference is that MLK lived long enough to answer his call.

Trayvon was killed before he could live out his call and dream, which is buried with him. George Zimmerman made a decision that has changed his life as well.

Every human being is part of the one single human race. We are one blood; One race. We are Created with a dream inside, and when we are allowed to be born and to live out our God ordained lives, we have a chance to be great.

Would Martin Luther King, Jr. as a teenager wear a hoodie in the 21st Century? I may not think so, but who knows. Would Martin Luther King, Jr. weep at the tragic loss of the life and dream of Trayvon Martin, and the now deferred dream of George Zimmerman? Most likely.

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Give God His Due In Trayvon/Zimmerman Saga

Wednesday, July 17th, 2013

Trayvon_Zimmerman

Listen on audio HERE.

Hello, I’m Dr. Alveda King, Director of African American Outreach for Priests for Life and Founder of Alveda King Ministries.

This is 2013, summer, we’re about to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington and the famous “I Have a Dream” speech by my uncle, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

My father, Rev. A.D. King and my uncle, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., whom I call Uncle ML, worked together in the Civil Rights Movement.

Today, in the 21st Century, during this long, hot summer, we’ve had a verdict for George Zimmerman in the killing of Trayvon Martin. We grieve the passing of young Mr. Trayvon Martin. His dreams have been deferred and buried with him. He no longer has a dream here on this earth. However, America again is in turmoil as we look at that verdict. I’d like to put it this way. We have given justice its due, now let’s give God His due.

We should join together in prayer during this tumultuous season and bring America together so that historically we can remember when a young man was slain in America, Trayvon Martin, America was saddened and grieved and came together and prayed.

Politically, I have been called and termed a Conservative. My cousin, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s daughter, Dr. Bernice King, can be called a Moderate. And our cousin, Dr. Angela Farris Watkins, the daughter of Dr. King’s sister, can also perhaps been termed a Liberal.

However, we may have differing political viewpoints but one thing is not debatable: violence will never be the answer in solving the problems of a society. We must now turn to our knees, fall on our knees, and ask God to bring us together as one human race. No longer will we accept the lie that we are separate races. Acts 17:26 says, “Of one blood we were all created together. “

As brothers and sisters, let us move forward together ,racially, reconciling to the fact that we are one human race, not divided but together, in need of help, in need of guidance, in need of love.

God bless you all,
Dr. Alveda King

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Prayer Vigil for “Gosnell Babies” Friday in Philadelphia

Monday, July 15th, 2013

Priests for Life

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: July 15, 2013

Contact: Leslie Palma
347-286-7277

Father Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, issued the following statement today regarding a prayer vigil planned for 10 a.m. Friday, July 19, outside the office of Philadelphia Medical Examiner Dr. Sam Gulino:

“In the 2010 raid of the abortion clinic of Kermit Gosnell in Philadelphia, the remains of some 45 babies were found in jars, milk cartons, and other containers throughout the clinic and in the freezer. It is bad enough that these children were killed, whether in the womb or outside the womb. But their bodies have still not been buried, despite the offer of Priests for Life to conduct proper funeral services and burials, and the assistance likewise offered by funeral homes and other interested persons from around the nation.

“The babies are currently still in the possession of the Philadelphia Medical Examiner. As a reminder of their humanity, and as a sign of our solidarity with them, Priests for Life is holding a prayer service on Friday, July 19, from 10 to 11 a.m. in front of the building where they are being kept, at 321 University Ave., Philadelphia. If the Medical Examiner will not bring these babies to us, then we will go to them.

“Our Youth Director, Bryan Kemper, and our Pastoral Associate Kevin Burke, who works in the outreach of our Silent No More Awareness Campaign and of Rachel’s Vineyard, will assist in leading the service, in conjunction with our friend and colleague, Rev. Patrick Mahoney of the Christian Defense Coalition. We invite all people of good will to join us.

“The purpose of this prayer service is to commend these babies, their families, and those who killed them, to the love and mercy of Almighty God, in whose hands are the lives of us all. We seek to continue to shed light on the fact that these children are our brothers and sisters, and that their bodies are sacred and must be reverenced. We have already given them names, and we will hold a major national funeral service at some point in the near future.

“We seek, likewise, to shed light on the violence of abortion, which killed these children. The killing of a child is equally wrong whether it is carried out inside the womb or outside the womb. It is the violence itself that must end; the place where it occurs is secondary.

“We also use this opportunity to extend an urgent invitation to healing for all those who have been involved in abortion. We who reject abortion do not reject those who have had abortions; rather, we embrace them with compassion and love. Nor do we reject those who work or have worked in the abortion industry. They, too, need healing and compassion, which we provide through our work with the Society of Centurions, a program of healing and outreach for former abortionists and clinic staff.

“We invite all people of good will to join our efforts at StopAbortionNow.org.

See the Facebook event page.

Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org.

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Dr. Alveda King: “Grieved Over Strife Surrounding Zimmerman Verdict”

Monday, July 15th, 2013

Trayvon_Zimmerman

For Immediate Release
July 15, 2013

Contact: Leslie Palma
Leslie@priestsforlife.org
(347) 286-7277

“I believe that the verdict in the Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin Case further exposes a grievous and deep vein of disharmony and racial tension in our nation that can only be healed when people realize that every human being should be treated with dignity and respect,” says Dr. Alveda King, Director of African American Outreach for Priests for Life.

“A trial like this causes public debate, and people have forgotten what is right anymore. Now Trayvon’s tragic death is obscured and Mr. Zimmerman is a public spectacle. The lines of what is right and what is legal/lawful have also been blurred and this trial exposes that.

“We saw the same scenarios in the O. J. trial and the Casey Anthony case. There was reasonable doubt, no matter how minute the reasonable doubt proves to be. Even more recently, abortionists are butchering women in so called legal yet under-regulated facilities where in many cases no arrests are being made; with Kermit Gosnell’s case being a recent exception.

“In Chicago, where random killings are at an all time high, a Black Woman, Tonya Reaves, was recently slaughtered and bled to death for five hours in a Planned Parenthood abortion mill and no arrests have been made.

“Now in the wake of Trayvon’s senseless death and Mr. Zimmerman’s acquittal many people are angry at the tragic loss of life and what some perceive to be a shun on the Black race. For the record, Acts 17:26 teaches that there is one blood and one human race, not multiple races, so racism is based on a lie!

“Others seem to feel a victory because certain constitutional rights were favorably argued and the question of reasonable doubt prevailed in this case. Yet it is important to also note that Zimmerman’s life is ruined too, and that the court of public opinion is not completely on his side.

“So in a way the blind scales of justice seem to have favored Mr. Zimmerman while Trayvon’s voice is silenced and his dream died with him.

“The Bible says mercy triumphs over justice:

“For judgment is without mercy to the one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment.” (James 2:13 NKJV)

“And Micah 6:8 says that we should add love and humility to justice.

“Micah 6:8 (NIV)
8 He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly[a] with your God.

“Love and humility are missing on both sides of this struggle!

“My uncle Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. once said that we must all learn to live together as brothers (and sisters) or perish as fools. Too many people are dying today for too many reasons, and the race baiting and strife add fuel to the fire which grieves my soul.

“Again a young American man has perished, another is a public spectacle. Who wins?

“We must now use this controversy as an opportunity to help educate our future generations as to how to act and how to react in similar situations; then maybe young Trayvon’s death will not be in vain.

“A profound injustice has occurred in glossing over the death of this young man and the suffering of his family. The not guilty verdict violates the tender nuances of human suffering and the integrity of the criminal justice system in his community.

“It remains critically-important, however, that all protests against the verdict demonstrate an irrevocable commitment to nonviolence, to honor the dignity of Trayvon Martin’s precious life and not add further tragedy to what his family and the people of Sanford have already experienced.

“Let’s face it. If both people in this tragedy were of common ethnicity, there would be no media feeding frenzy. The gun control debate is a smokescreen in that people do use guns to kill other people as Zimmerman did in this case. But guns don’t kill people. People kill people. Yes, sometimes they use guns, but they sometimes use bombs or knives too. We definitely need love control and heart control and nonviolence control.

“There are murders going on every day that the media overlooks. Remember Tonya Reaves. Millions of Black babies and many of their mothers are being slaughtered in abortion mills. Where is the justice for that?

“Obviously strife and struggle and conflict were at the base of this case. Two men alone on the street in the dark. A punch is thrown. A gun escalates the trauma and drama. We need a Beloved Community. We need nonviolence conflict resolution.

“Let us please give a nonviolent response to Trayvon’s family, to Mr. Zimmerman and to America to help to promote healing and to lay the foundation needed to repeal faulty laws that fail to protect our youth, and to further enact other reforms to prevent such tragedies in the future.”

Click HERE for another perspective.

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Real Freedom Rides Save Babies

Friday, July 12th, 2013

pro-life freedom bus

Priests for Life launched Pro-Life Freedom Rides in 2010 to motivate and inspire Americans to stand for and protect the sanctity of life; to #Stand4Life; to promote and inform people about the sanctity of life and attacks on babies and their mothers.

Now the abortion lobby wants to do an abortion rights freedom ride although they know full well that so called abortion rights kill babies and also hurt and sometimes kill their mothers. Reproductive rights and health are best served by eliminating abortion or harmful contraceptives that are linked to serious conditions such as breast cancer, cervical cancer, strikes and heart attacks. So called Abortion rights circumvent human life and human rights, including the rights of the human babies and their mothers.

Do the abortion bus riders want to ride for the rights of doctors, and I use that term loosely, like Kermit Gosnell, LeRoy Carhart, and Douglas Karpen?

People, it’s time to get off the abortion bus fueled by Planned Parenthood and Cecile Richards!

pph bus

The desperation of the abortion lobby is becoming more apparent as they demean the Freedom Riders of 1961 and the 21st Century ProLife Freedom Riders! An organizer of the Abortion Rights Freedom Rides, Sunsara Taylor, is quoted in an article as saying, “we unapologetically come out and say that fetuses are not babies, abortion is not murder and women are not incubators, and we make the demand that abortion be available on demand and without apology.”

I encourage Ms. Taylor to read any biology textbook and she will see that life begins at conception. When the 23 chromosomes from the father and 23 from the mother join together, they create a unique individual life, differing from the mother and the father, a human life. I know it’s been a while since I was in school, but unless things have changed, two humans are only capable of reproducing another human.

With 2011 and 2012 being the years with the highest number of pro-life bills being passed stopping and restricting abortion, the pro-abortion lobby is becoming desperate as evident in Texas as the Texas Senate in poised to vote on a bill that would ban abortions after 20 weeks (5 months) and place other restrictions on abortion mills. Pro-Death Pro-Abortion voices have resorted to chanting “Hail Satan” as pro-lifers pray and sing AMAZING GRACE. Meanwhile, pro-abortion activists are becoming more disruptive and getting arrested. Let’s pray that violence will not be the next progression.

We must all pray for the passage of more pro-life legislation and for the abortion community that their hearts will be changed and they will become real defenders of women’s rights which must include protection from the harmful impact of abortion.

RECALL ABORTION and ride for life!

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I #Stand4Life With Texas

Thursday, July 11th, 2013

#IStand4Life Perry

With the passage of HB2, a bill that would ban abortions after 20 weeks, in the Texas State House of Representatives, the bill now goes to the Senate where a vote should take place later this week or beginning of next week.

In spite of State Senator Wendy Davis’ eleven hour filibuster the bill moves closer to approval after Texas Governor Rick Perry called a second special session in order to get pro-life legislation approved.

I stand 4 life with Texans and other pro-lifers who are fighting to protect the lives of the pre-born and their mothers. Medical evidence shows that a baby can feel pain at 5 months of development. Putting aside the fact that abortion is the killing of a human life and should be illegal, abortion of a baby at 20 weeks (5 months) by ripping her limb by limb is something that every person should be against.

Additionally, the further along in a pregnancy the woman is, the higher the risk of the abortion. Protecting women from high risk abortions that have resulted in the deaths of hundreds of women is also something that every person should be fighting for.

That only makes sense.

We have regulations to protect society from unscrupulous doctors in other medical fields, from deceitful auto mechanics, from fly-by-night home contractors, from scheming pyramid salesmen. The government seems to be interested in protecting society from all forms of abuses except when it comes to the abortion industry.

When it comes to the abortion industry, protection seems to be the word of the day. The abortion industry uses its millions of dollars to buy themselves protection from restrictions on abortion, from regulations of abortion, from prosecution of wrongdoing. When it comes to abortion, money talks.

The fact that a woman would stand and talk for eleven hours to stop this bill that would protect human life, both unborn and their mothers, only serves to confirm that abortion is evil. This was further confirmed during a recent peaceful prayer vigil by pro-lifers in which pro-aborts chanted “Hail Satan” as pro-lifers sang Amazing Grace.

Are pro-aborts getting that desperate that they are no longer hiding the fact that abortion is a product of Satan? Are the people of America going to ever wake up to this fact?

It’s time for America and the world to repent of the sin of abortion and turn back to God. It’s time we begin to value all life as the gift God intended it to be.

I STAND 4 LIFE! Please stand with me.

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Priests for Life Stands With Texas!

Wednesday, July 10th, 2013

Priests for Life

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: July 9, 2013

Contact: Leslie Palma
347-286-7277

Three college students interning with the Priests for Life Youth Outreach Department are on the ground in Austin as the Texas Legislature prepares to vote today on an historic bill that would protect babies from abortion after 5 months into the pregnancy and require abortion clinics to be more diligent in protecting women.

“We are starting to see chinks in the armor of the abortion industry as more and more laws are passed to protect innocent human life, and Texas is a great example of this” said Bryan Kemper, Youth Outreach Director for Priests for Life. “We stand with Texas as they make advances against ‘big abortion’ and move towards ending the deadly industry.”

Priests for Life and its Youth Outreach, Stand True, have been on the front lines of the battle in Texas both as part of the social media blitz taking place as well as having boots on the ground.

David Rosa, a spokesman for the Silent No More Awareness Campaign and a resident of San Antonio, testified before a Senate committee yesterday in Austin to promote the message that men who take part in an abortion often find they regret their lost fatherhood. He told the panel how that regret led to a downward spiral in his life, and how he sought healing to be able to forgive himself. (The Silent No More Awareness Campaign is a project of Priests for Life and Anglicans for Life.)

“We have the votes in this committee, in the Senate and in the House,” said Rosa. “This bill should pass.”

Rosa’s 16-year-old son Daniel also testified in favor of the bill.

Dr. Alveda King, director of African-American Outreach for Priests for Life, has no doubt that her uncle, Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., would be in Austin today fighting for the unborn.

“Abortion is the civil rights battle of today,” Dr. King said. “My uncle’s heart would be broken that even as America celebrated its Independence Day last week, the babies are still not free.”

Father Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, said that whether supporters are in Austin or elsewhere, all are asked to join Priests for Life in a special Prayer for Texas, which can be found at ProLifePrayers.com.

“Our prayers, and the actions they inspire, will bring progress in Texas and around the nation,” said Father Pavone, who is a priest of the Amarillo, TX diocese. “We thank God for the Governor of Texas, his team, the pro-life legislators, and our colleagues in the many pro-life groups in Texas. Onward to victory, together and under God!”

Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org.

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America and Independence Day

Tuesday, July 2nd, 2013

flag-and-statue-of-liberty

“July 4, 2013 is America’s Independence Day, and still the babies are not free.” – Dr. Alveda C. King

Acts 17:24, 26, 27 – God made the world and everything in it. He is Lord of Heaven and Earth. And He made of one blood, all nations of people to dwell on all the earth, and determined the places where they would live; that they should seek the Lord and find Him…

In the United States, Independence Day, commonly known as the Fourth of July, is a national holiday commemorating the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, declaring independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain. Independence Day is commonly associated with fireworks, parades, barbecues, carnivals, fairs, picnics, concerts, baseball games, political speeches and ceremonies, and various other public and private events celebrating the history, government, and traditions of the United States. Independence Day is the national day of the United States.

During the American Revolution, the legal separation of the American colonies from Great Britain occurred on July 2, 1776, when the Second Continental Congress voted to approve a resolution of independence that had been proposed in June by Richard Henry Lee of Virginia. After voting for independence, Congress turned its attention to the Declaration of Independence, a statement explaining this decision, which had been prepared by a Committee of Five, with Thomas Jefferson as its principal author. Congress debated and revised the Declaration, finally approving it on July 4. A day earlier, John Adams had written to his wife Abigail:

Nearly a century later, the war for freedom continued on this continent. During this time, President Abraham Lincoln prayed to God to end slavery in America. In his prayer, he asked God that if slavery was wrong, to please allow the North to win the war. The North won, and on January 1, 1863, President Lincoln was a leader with the heart of an abolitionist. The battle for freedom still continues today, with the dream of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. that Protestant and Catholics and Gentiles and Jews will sing “Free at Last” together. We must remember that all of this started with the prayers of the Founding Fathers of America.

Along with the Founding Fathers usually listed in history books, a notable African American John Hanson is sometimes listed as one of the Founding Fathers, along with James Armistead and Peter Salem. Also, other notable Blacks such as Benjamin Banneker and Crispus Atticus are credited with helping to establish our nation’s independence. This year during the Juneteenth Celebration, honoring Lincoln’s signing of the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863 which officially takes place today in 36 states in America, members of Congress and former Black Congressman J. C. Watts recognized the work of Black slaves in building our nation’s Capitol. So today, we celebrate the ongoing march towards true liberty for all Americans, born and unborn.

Please take a moment now to remember the Declaration of Independence:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

Were there African-American Founding Fathers? A suppressed history…

Were there African Americans present at the founding of America? We know that most African Americans were slaves when this nation was founded, and we also know that many of the Caucasian founding fathers were slave owners. However, it is not widely know that some Black Americans also owned slaves during that time in history. Slavery is an evil form of oppression, not always demarked by the skin color of the slaves and the slave owners.

We know that African American slaves were forced to exert manual labor to help build the first White House. The question remains, what were some of the other important roles of African Americans in our country’s independence?

The official name “The United States of America” was determined by the Second Continental Congress in 1977. It would be nearly one hundred years later, in 1863 at the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation by President Abraham Lincoln, that African Americans would legally be freed from the forced servitude and labor called slavery. Let us examine the roles of some African Americans at the time of the founding of America.

One of those was Peter Salem , who can be found in a painting of the Battle of Bunker Hill.

In the painting of the Battle of Lexington, the people assembled here are members of Rev. Jonas Clark’s congregation. They were a congregation of both black and white Americans. One of those men was Prince Estabrook, a black American.

Remember the famous painting of George Washington crossing the Delaware? Near the front of the boat you will see Prince Whipple helping row the boat, as well as a woman. All Americans were involved in winning our independence.

There is another painting of Marquis de Lafayette, the Frenchman who so greatly helped George Washington with our troops, and James Armistead . Armistead was an American double-spy who helped get information from the British and feed them bad information about us. His service was pivotal to our success at the Battle of Yorktown…which effectively won the American Revolution for us.

David Barton is founder of Wall Builders and author of “American History in Black and White.” Another noted historian of the founding of America is Dr. Lucas Morel, a professor at Washington and Lee University in Virginia and author of “Lincoln’s Sacred Effort.” These historians write in great detail about Armistead’s role in American history, as well as the friendship between Lafayette and Armistead.

They also write about Wentworth Cheswell, who is considered the first black American elected to public office. We all know about Paul Revere’s famous ride warning that the British were coming, but Cheswell rode in another direction to give the same warning.

While we know that most Blacks were slaves in America during the time of its founding, many do not know or have forgotten that there are also African American Founders. Since many of these black founders show up in various paintings of the Revolution, we have evidence about the role of black Americans in our founding. Somewhere along the way, like many historical facts, this has been forgotten.

Many attempt to connect Frederick Douglass, who is a better known African American leader, to the founding of America. Yet, since he actually lived years later, it would be more accurate to place him in history as a “Re-founder, emerging during the time of the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863.” .Douglass once believed the “Three-Fifths Compromise ” was a terrible affront to enslaved black Americans and that it rendered the U.S. Constitution totally corrupt. However, when he studied the Constitution along with the notes from the Constitutional Convention, he realized it was an anti-slavery document.

According to Barton, a some of the Caucasian Founders were anti-slavery, recognizing that slavery was wrong and was counter to the ideals of freedom upon which the American Revolution was based. However, there were many in the South who wanted to preserve slavery in the United States, and the impasse threatened the union of our fledgling nation. As a compromise, they came up with the idea of counting slaves as “three-fifths” for the purposes of representation and apportionment.

If a slave was not worthy of freedom like any other American, then he should not really be counted for the purposes of representation and apportionment. Of course, the Southern states saw how this would hurt them in the federal government, so they compromised by counting slaves at three-fifths of a free person. It made it harder for pro-slavery states to get as much representation in congress; thus the anti-slavery states would have greater representation in apportionment…and in making laws for the nation in general. This gave the Southern states an incentive to free their slaves so that their overall population numbers would increase and thus give the Southern states greater representation and apportionment. Through the years, this flawed effort continues to be interpreted as considering Blacks to be three-fifths human. Even now, in the twenty first century, the battle continues to resolve the right of Blacks the full and equal right of the vote.

Thomas Jefferson, one of the more well known Founding Fathers spoke out against slavery while owning slaves. He even had a Caucasian wife and a slave mistress, Sally Hemming. Most people don’t know that Sally was Martha’s half-sister, they had the same father, a slave owner. According to written historical accounts, she looked like Martha. Sally moved into the White House after Martha’s died of a broken heart. How strange it must have been for Jefferson to be constantly reminded of his dead wife. Sally’s children were the only slaves Jefferson freed; he did so upon his death, but by that time a couple of Sally’s children had already escaped. Being so fair-skinned, they passed into white society keeping their past a secret.

While many of the Founding Fathers were like Jefferson, some were not. One example is John Quincy Adams, and early American President. John Quincy Adams denounced slavery more strongly than did any other early American president, calling slavery “a sin before the sight of God,” an “outrage upon the goodness of God,” and “the great and foul stain upon the North American Union.”

In an especially eloquent statement, Adams wrote: “It is among the evils of slavery that it taints the very sources of moral principle. It establishes false estimates of virtue and vice: for what can be more false and heartless than this doctrine which makes the first and holiest rights of humanity to depend upon the color of the skin?”

The reality of America’s history, both good and bad–should be revised and rewritten, to include the truths that have been hidden. Black leaders like Lemuel Haynes who was a black American, born to a white woman and a black man became a minister and pastored a church with a white congregation, and also fought in the militia in the American Revolution. There was also Benjamin Banneker, a black American who was involved in the planning of Washington D.C. and was said to be very intelligent and involved with building clocks and predicting eclipses.

Of course, Black slaves were forced to provide the manpower for the hard labor of building our nation’s Capitol. And Blacks would be used cruelly as slaves in America until 1863. Some would not realize they had been freed until an Executive Order would be issued on June 19, 1865. That order would read thusly:

“The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of personal rights and rights of property between former masters and slaves, and the connection heretofore existing between them becomes that between employer and hired labor. The freedmen are advised to remain quietly at their present homes and work for wages. They are informed that they will not be allowed to collect at military posts and that they will not be supported in idleness either there or elsewhere.” –General Orders, Number 3; Headquarters District of Texas, Galveston, June 19, 1865

While this order is not widely known of, it is the basis for the African American Holiday, Juneteenth. The problem with this political effort, like so many others, is that it is incomplete. It ordered the slaves now free to work for pay, but did not order the slave masters to pay them.

The Bible says that when Jesus Christ sets a person free, that person is free indeed. Understanding this, we know that the real formula for liberty for everyone is in Jesus Christ. One question is this, why didn’t the Caucasian Founding Fathers follow God’s patter for freeing slaves? It is found in the book of Leviticus, chapter 25, where slave owners were charged to free slaves after seven years, and send them away with goods and property. This has never happened in America.

“In addition, you must count off seven Sabbath years, seven sets of seven years, adding up to forty-nine years in all. Then on the Day of Atonement in the fiftieth year, blow the ram’s horn loud and long throughout the land. Set this year apart as holy, a time to proclaim freedom throughout the land for all who live there. It will be a jubilee year for you, when each of you may return to the land that belonged to your ancestors and return to your own clan. This fiftieth year will be a jubilee for you. During that year you must not plant your fields or store away any of the crops that grow on their own, and don’t gather the grapes from your unpruned vines. It will be a jubilee year for you, and you must keep it holy. But you may eat whatever the land produces on its own. In the Year of Jubilee each of you may return to the land that belonged to your ancestors. “When you make an agreement with your neighbor to buy or sell property, you must not take advantage of each other. When you buy land from your neighbor, the price you pay must be based on the number of years since the last jubilee. The seller must set the price by taking into account the number of years remaining until the next Year of Jubilee. The more years until the next jubilee, the higher the price; the fewer years, the lower the price. After all, the person selling the land is actually selling you a certain number of harvests. Show your fear of God by not taking advantage of each other. I am the Lord your God. (Leviticus 25:8-17 NLT)

Today, even though many African Americans thought that having a United States President with brown skin would set them free, we must realize that our liberty comes not from human might, power or ability, but true freedom comes from accepting the salvation and Lordship of Jesus Christ.

The first Jubilee is in the Bible, and a Black Liberator names Moses, a Man of God was used to lead a people to freedom. There are also modern day leaders used to lead people to truth and liberty.

In the nineteen fifties and sixties, a Man of God named Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was called by God to lead a people to the Promised Land. Martin Luther King, Jr. didn’t get there with us, yet he looked over and saw a time of liberty.

Dr. King once said this:

“A religion true to its nature must also be concerned about man’s social conditions….Any religion that professes to be concerned with the souls of men and is not concerned with the slums that damn them, the economic conditions that strangle them, and the social conditions that cripple them is a dry-as-dust religion. MLK

According to the Bible in Acts 17, there are no separate races of human beings (male and female), there is only one human race. This is why the age old battle of racism is so tragic. Truly there can be no independence for a nation or a people group until all people are recognized as human beings. Of course this truth applies to skin color, age, physical conditions, and the whole host of human elements that people experience during their lifetimes.

It is human nature to equate liberty with the opportunity to do everything that feels good to individuals without considering the needs of humanity as a whole. It is also human nature to debate over Divine Order, while all the while humanity as a whole often suffers from a poverty of spirit.

Throughout our history, people have made vast and notable contributions to our history. Yet, we all have not been treated fairly by a system that was formed in hypocrisy. Today, babies in their mothers’ wombs are treated with inequity. And there are still the issues of racism, sexual perversion and reproductive genocide to overcome. Humans try to fix problems and eradicate sin with manmade laws. Yet, imperfect manmade laws have caused our nation to operate under a curse. This curse must be broken in order for America to prosper.

Today, many people in America and the world live in the bondage. Too many are enslaved by the sins of fear, violence, racism, reproductive genocide, sexual perversion, economic idolatry, sickness and greed. These issues must now be addressed with Agape Love and truth.

May July 4, truly become a symbol of freedom, not just for some, but for all.

“So if the Son sets you free, you are truly free.” John 8:36 NLT

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