You are Invited!
Compass Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), in partnership with the Faith Alliance and the Caring Community Collaborative (C3), is hosting a Juneteenth Community Vigil on Friday, June 19 from 7-8:30 p.m.
It will be held in the field next to the church, socially distanced.
Masks are required.
Bring a blanket or lawn chair.
We will remember the past, reflect on the present, and recommit to a future of freedom and justice for all. This event is open to the entire community, of all (or no) faiths, to remember the struggle for freedom and justice is ongoing, and to pray for the healing of our nation and world. There will be music, reflections, prayers, and silence.
These are the confirmed participants, some of whom cannot be present but are bringing remarks via others:
Mary Aguilera, Trichair of Ohio’s Poor People’s Campaign NCMR
Diane Andow, Compass Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
Rev. Thomas Barnes, Kemper Road Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
Larry Burks, West Chester Township Administrator
Ashley Chance, Mason City Council
Bishop Michael Harris, Body of Christ Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
Pastor Joe Kay, Nexus Church (United Church of Christ)
Rev. Dr. C.J. Koen, Northridge Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
Sue Mahlock, President, Faith Alliance of West Chester & Liberty Township
Imam Hossam Musa, Islamic Center of Greater Cincinnati
Lynda O’Connor, President, Caring Community Collaborative
Rev. Phyllis Spiegel, St. Ann Episcopal Church
Rev. Michael Tafamombe, Zion Global Ministries Church
Compass Christian Church is located at 6771 Tylersville Road, Mason, OH 45040. Tel. 513.754.0777. www.compassc.org
Juneteenth is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States. Dating back to 1865, it was on June 19th that the Union soldiers, led by Major General Gordon Granger, landed at Galveston, Texas with news that the war had ended and that the enslaved were now free. Note that this was two and a half years after President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation – which had become official January 1, 1863. The Emancipation Proclamation had little impact on the Texans due to the minimal number of Union troops to enforce the new Executive Order. However, with the surrender of General Lee in April of 1865, and the arrival of General Granger’s regiment, the forces were finally strong enough to influence and overcome the resistance.
Later attempts to explain this two and a half year delay in the receipt of this important news have yielded several versions that have been handed down through the years. Often told is the story of a messenger who was murdered on his way to Texas with the news of freedom. Another is that the news was deliberately withheld by the enslavers to maintain the labor force on the plantations. And still, another is that federal troops actually waited for the slave owners to reap the benefits of one last cotton harvest before going to Texas to enforce the Emancipation Proclamation. All of which or none of these versions could be true. Certainly, for some, President Lincoln’s authority over the rebellious states was in question. Whatever the reasons, conditions in Texas remained status quo well beyond what was statutory.