By Aria Brent,
AFRO Staff Writer,

The Juneteenth holiday was a day spent celebrating Black freedom and liberation all across the nation. The Black media authority joined in the festivities by hosting a breakfast where some of Charm City’s most impactful faith leaders were honored.

Rev. Dr. A.C.D Vaughn was posthumously recognized for his many years of service to the Baltimore community along with Bishop Walter Scott Thomas, Bishop Clifford Johnson and Dr. Leah E. White. The National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) also received special honor and NNPA President and CEO Dr. Benjamin Chavis was in attendance to discuss the role of the Black church in the success of Black led movements. 

“Most people don’t know that Black press grew out of a Black church. The civil rights movement grew out of the Black Church,” stated Chavis. “When I hear people today talk about ‘we don’t need a movement,’  ‘we don’t need the church’ or ‘we don’t need the press’, the question is ‘what do you need?’ We’ve only come this far by faith.” 

In addition to the four faith leaders that were recognized, several historical institutes were commemorated as well. The Baltimore chapter of the NAACP, the Greater Baltimore chapter of the Urban League and National Council of Negro Women were all honored.

At the event guests had the pleasure of being serenaded by the Carter Legacy Singers in addition to a special presentation from Rev. Dr. R.J. Chandler Sr., who pastors at Freedom Temple AME Zion Church, and his son Rev. Dr. R.J. Chandler Jr. 

Bishop Vashti Murphy McKenzie shared that the performances and celebration are truly motivators for future progress. 

“If we’re going to have more than a holiday years from now, it’s going to take the courage of all of us in this room–every generation, from the pulpit to the businesses to the classroom–it’s going to take all of us!” exclaimed McKenzie.  “We need to show up and we need to show up right.”