There are local blacks and institutions that have played significant roles in our history and are still contributing through the civic and religious life of this great community.
Today we salute some of the religious institutions of our community. The Bible says: “That which is temporal passes away, but that which is spiritual remains.” We must teach young people the things that will make our nation strong, useful and influential throughout the world.
When we lean heavily upon God, our faith teaches that the Almighty will order our steps and that none of them shall slide.
Thanks to our great leaders who had, and still have, a strong religious philosophy. For more than 50 years these local churches have kept their doors open to thousands of dedicated Christian workers.
We salute these congregations who have given more than a half century of service to the community: Allen Chapel African Methodist Episcopal Church, 114 years; St. James African Methodist Episcopal Church, 142 years; New Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church, 96 years; New Mount Calvary Missionary Baptist Church, 93 years; Second Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church, 88 years; First Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church, 118 years; St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church, 130 years; New Bethel Missionary Baptist Church, 99 years; St. John Missionary Baptist Church, 120 years; Zion Hope Missionary Baptist Church, 113 years; Greater New Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist Church, 86 years; St. Matthews Missionary Baptist Church, 99 years; Morning Glory Missionary Baptist Church, 77 years; Progress Missionary Baptist Church, 90 years; Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church, 66 years.
These churches along with others have contributed to the leadership of our community.
• Celery City Lodge No. 542 and Evergreen Temple No. 321 Order of Elks will hold their annual oratorical contest at 6 p.m. Saturday at New Zion Primitive Baptist Church, East Sanford.
• The youth of Greater New Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church, 1720 Pear Ave., will observe Black History Month at 7:30 p.m. Saturday. On Sunday at 4 p.m. at Providence Missionary Baptist Church, Lake Monroe, the Rev. Bruce Jarmen will be in charge of the services. The observance of the 86th anniversary will begin Sunday.
• Seminole Community College will recognize student achievement and African-American History Month on Thursday at its 16th annual Heritage Celebration. The program will be held in the Fine Arts Building, Sanford/Lake Mary Campus at noon. Guest artists will be the Hamilton Elementary School Choir and Drumline. Free to the public.