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Former lifestyle compels preacher to help troubled youth


Charlotte Y. Cobb wasn’t always compelled to preach the gospel or steer youth away from the crime-ridden streets of Memphis. She also wasn’t always trying to arrest teen pregnancy, keep wayward youth in school, or intervene on their behalf to keep them out of gangs.

In fact, Cobb, who pastors the Cherokee Outreach Ministry Empowerment Center (COMEC) at 2218 Eldridge St. in the 38108 zip code area of North Memphis, is trying to make a difference in the lives of teenagers who remind her that she could’ve lost her life on the same streets, in the same zip code area, decades ago.

  • Written by Wiley Henry

Traditional gospel music keeps Billy Rivers and The Angelic Voices of Faith out front 35 years

Community choirs come and go, but the Stellar Award nominated Billy Rivers and The Angelic Voices of Faith has been a mainstay in traditional gospel music. In fact the choir will celebrate its 35th anniversary with a reunion concert Sunday, Aug. 31st at Golden Gate Cathedral, 3240 James Rd. 
The doors will open at 6 p.m. The choir also will host a banquet gala Friday, Aug. 29th. The location hasn’t been announced by press-time.
  • Written by Wiley Henry

‘A heart for people’ inspires the Servant’s Circle

new ministry
“I have a heart for people and I’ve always been a servant of the community. I just want to see people have the best in life,” said Minister Telisa Franklin, senior servant of The Servant’s Circle, a newly formed ministry that Franklin started Aug. 2nd.
The Servant’s Circle is a non-traditional, non-denominational church that holds service on Saturdays in a building that Franklin has used as her place of business along a business strip at 2988 Old Austin Peay Hwy. Service starts at 6 p.m. each Saturday.
  • Written by Wiley Henry

Fullview Missionary Baptist church is on fire!

Fullview Missionary Baptist Church can now say goodbye to its $2.5 million mortgage, and it will be doing just that with the help of a few flames.
A mortgage-burning ceremony following the church’s 9 a.m. service is set for Sunday (July 6th) at the church at 7100 Memphis-Arlington Road in Bartlett.
The fact that the mortgage has been paid off within 10 years has Pastor Walter Peggs Sr. supremely grateful. 

Eugene Waller Scholarship Prayer Breakfast extols the virtues of faith

Waller1 600“Championing the Future Through Faith” was the theme for the Eugene Waller Scholarship Prayer Breakfast, which was held at the Holiday Inn-University of Memphis last weekend. More than 300 guests gathered to pay homage to the late Rev. Eugene Waller, former pastor of Cummings Street Baptist Church, and the scholarship’s namesake.
The guests celebrated the legacy of Waller’s faith, scholarship, and service. The Rev. Bonnie Oliver-Brandon of Mt. Zion Baptist Church set the tone of the program by preparing the audience for the “auspicious, substantive, but brief” event. 
Minister Barbara Tolbert followed with the devotion/invocation, followed by the occasion by Waller’s granddaughters, Atty. Kristi Faulkner and Kimberli Waller. They shared their grandfather’s devotion to scholarship and his conviction that all people should prepare for their calling in life.  

Line Dance-A-Thon is a bridge builder at Unity Christian Church

Unity1 600Unity Christian Church in Whitehaven held its inaugural Line Dance-A-Thon last Saturday (June 7th). Led by the Rev. Eric Ovid Donaldson, the church’s pastor, the event was the first for the year for U.C.C.’s Health Ministry. 
“The U.C.C. Health Ministry has a mission to bring awareness to health and healing and is partnering with the community to promote healthier lifestyles,” said Lorri Harris, the ministry chairperson.
The Mid-South has been cited with having one of the highest percentages of obesity in the country, which convinced Harris that activity and movement are important in improving one’s physical, mental and spiritual well-being. 

Christening puts hope on display

foster 600Morning View Baptist Church is located in the heart of South Memphis at 926 Carnegie St. in an area known as Lauderdale Sub. At one time, it was notoriously known worldwide as the “Dirty, Dirty” by the city’s underground rap scene. It is an area where American success stories seem few and far between.
The church pastor, the Rev. Alvin Fleming, holds a regular Sunday breakfast talk at the corner of Essex and Humber trying to get young men off the street and into the church, or anywhere they can find hope away from the too numerous sad tales. 
This past Sunday, hope was on display inside Morning View where the Crutisons – father Maurice, mother Deborah, 12-year-old Aaliyah, 3-year-old Marissa, and 19-year-old Nicholas Williams – were dressed in all white to observe the christening of Marissa and several other children from the church.
  • Written by Tony Jones

Ministers in the hunt for votes

Ministers 600With the Democratic Primary for the Ninth Congressional District about two months away, ministers in dueling camps are taking a stand, leaving those in tune with their spiritual guidance to determine if that influence should extend to the voting booth.
While such division is not new, some are suggesting that this time around the stakes are higher for African Americans in the district represented by incumbent Steve Cohen since 2006.
In May, more than a dozen ministers convened near the National Civil Rights Museum to announce their support for Atty. Ricky Wilkins, who – along with community activist Isaac Richmond – is challenging Cohen in the Aug. 7th primary.
  • Written by Wiley Henry