• 55°

Bethel A.M.E. hosts 100 Men in Black Workshop

BONEYVILLE — On a typical weekend, the pews of Bethel African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E.) Church of Boneyville are filled with congregants and visitors for Sunday worship. Over the weekend of June 22-23, however, the pews were filled on back-to-back days.

The cause for an extra service was the 100 Men in Black Workshop hosted by Rev. Reginald R. Pullums and Bethel A.M.E. It was the 10th annual event for Pullums, who started the workshops during his time at Wayman A.M.E. Chapel in Georgetown.

It wasn’t an all-male event, but rather a mostly male occasion as a few women took the back pews to take in the message. And as Pullums stated, “It wasn’t just for black men.”

“When the Lord spoke to my heart about this years ago, it was not about denomination, it was not about color of skin, it was not about what side of the tracks you come from, it was to make it about men being accountable and learning how to encourage each other, young men black and white,” he said. “The name Men in Black is more about men, all men, coming to the workshop in black suits or suits, not just black men.”

The common purpose of the workshop was for the men to connect with God and learn how to be the men that God created them to be. Pullums noted that, in today’s society, it takes courage to live as a godly man due to the challenges faced each day that try to keep a man from walking in his God-ordained purpose.

Rev. Louis Haynes, pastor of Ward Chapel A.M.E., Scottsville, acted as workshop worship leader along with Pullums.

At the conclusion of the workshop portion of the day’s service, Pullums presented Elder Oliver Miller with the “Shining Star” Award.

Rev. Kyle Pernell was the guest speaker for the worship service following the workshop. Pernell, 19, youth minister at First United Baptist Church in Moorhead, Mississippi, celebrated 10 years of ministry this June. In his address, Pernell stressed that “We are our brothers’ keeper.”

Other leaders during worship were Bro. David Gambrel, who gave the opening prayer, Rev. Ralph Smith, pastor of St. James A.M.E., Danville, and Rev. Dennis Miller, pastor of Second Street Christian Church, Danville, who had the reading of scriptures, Bro. Kendall Cloyde who gave the welcome, Elder Dowell Miller who gave the Purpose, Rev. Ralph Johnson, pastor of Mt. Zion Frazier, who gave the invitation to discipleship, and Rev. James Smith, former presiding elder of the Lexington District, who gave the Charge to the Men.

Musical selections were presented by the Men of Bethel Choir and Glenn Gooch.

An unlisted guest was invited to the pulpit before the day’s offering was collected, with Pullums calling up Mark Upchurch, director of the Men’s Shelter in Stanford. Part of the day’s offering was to be dedicated to the shelter, which is located on Cut Off Street.