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Sunday, December 31, 2017

Watch Night



The following information was actually written as an essay by Charyn D. Sutton, The Onyx Group, in December 2000 and revised in August 2004. The essay appears here in its entirety...

If you grew up in a black community in the United States, you have probably heard of "Watch Night" Services, the gathering of the faithful in church on New Year's Eve. The service usually begins anywhere from 7:00pm-10:00pm and ends at 12:00 midnight with the entrance of the New Year. Some folks come to church first, before going out to celebrate. For others, church is the only New Year's Eve destination.

Like many others, I always assumed that Watch Night was a fairly standard Christian religious service, made a bit more Afrocentric because that's what happens when elements of Christianity become linked with the black church. And yes, there is a history of Watch Night Services in the Methodist tradition.

Still, it seemed that most white Christians did not include Watch Night Services on their calendars, but focused instead on Christmas Eve programs. In fact, there were instances where clergy in mainline denominations wondered aloud about the propriety of linking religious services with a secular holiday like New Year's Eve.

However, in doing some research, I discovered there are two essential reasons for the importance of New Year's Eve services in African American congregations. Many of the Watch Night Services in black communities that we celebrate today can be traced back to gatherings held on December 31, 1862, also known as "Freedom's Eve."

On that night, Americans of African descent came together in churches, gathering places, and private homes throughout the nation, anxiously awaiting news that the Emancipation Proclamation had become law. Then, at the stroke of midnight, it was January 1, 1863 and according to President Abraham Lincoln's promise, all slaves in the Confederate States were legally free. People remained in churches and other gathering places, eagerly awaiting word that Emancipation had been declared. When the actual news of freedom was received later that day, there were prayers, shouts of joy, and songs of praise as people fell to their knees and thanked God.

But even before 1862 and the possibility of a Presidential Emancipation, African people had gathered on New Year's Eve on plantations across the South. That is because many owners of enslaved Africans tallied up their business accounts on the first day of each new year. Human property was sold along with land, furnishings, and livestock to satisfy debts. Families and friends were separated. Often they never saw each other again in this earthly world. Thus, coming together on December 31 might be the last time for enslaved and free Africans to be together with loved ones.

Black folks in North America have gathered annually on New Year's Eve since the earliest days, praising God for bringing us safely through another year and praying for the future. Certainly, those traditional gatherings were made even more poignant by the events of 1863 which brought freedom to the slaves and the Year of Jubilee.

Many generations have passed since that time and most of us were never taught the significance of gathering on New Year's Eve. Yet, our traditions and faith still bring us together at the end of every year to celebrate once again, "how we got over."

Please pass this information on to your family and friends so that they will know the true history behind the tradition we call "Watch Night".


Saturday, December 30, 2017

My Grandson Loves K'Nex!


Electric Inferno Roller Coaster
Building Set (639 Pieces) Done! 





Friday, December 29, 2017

EJI 2018 Historical Wall Calendar




EJI is pleased to announce the release of their new 2018 calendar, A History of Racial Injustice. No matter how many times we are told to 'get over it' by certain people so they can feel comfortable, it's an unrealistic expectation and we are under no obligation to do it. As Christians, God expects us to forgive if we want to be forgiven, but history will only repeat itself if we forget. Nor should our history be altered, erased, or ignored because we did not create the injustices we suffered. Unfortunately, the struggle for racial equality is not over; but, we can find solace in the fact that God has brought us from a mighty long way and we're still standing. Click on the image or use the text link underneath to order your copy of the calendar today.


Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Every Animal Matters, But Black People Don't?



Please watch the video before you read my blog post.
The video narrative is noted below for reference purposes.

"She [tiger] saw her mother hacked to death. Now, she faces life trapped in a tiny cage. He [bear] saw his mother shot. They beat him to make him dance. She [dog] saw her sisters drowned. Somehow, she escaped. He [elephant] watched his mother cruelly worked to death. He's next. So many young animals are traumatized before their life has barely begun. Abused by people who treat them as tools to do a job or a nuisance to be wiped out. How do you see them? World Animal Protection, sees them as living, feeling creatures. Are you with us? Please call the number [1-877-938-5889] on your screen or go online [ProtectTheAnimals.org] right now and give just $15.00 a month to help stop this horrendous cruelty. These vulnerable young animals need you to protect them. Just $15.00 a month will make a difference. You will make the difference. It’s so important that you take a stand--so important that you are side by side with animals when they need you the most. Call or go online right now. Don’t wait. Everyday counts. Every animal matters. That’s why World Animal Protection is there treating the sick and injured, protecting them from a life of misery. But, we can’t do this important work without you. We need your support. For just $15.00 a month, 50 cents a day, you can help us make sure pain and fear are only memories for abused animals around the world. Please don’t put this off. Call the number on your screen or go online right now and become an animal protector with World Animal Protection. These suffering animals need you right now. They need you to care. Thank you."


First of all, let me start my post by saying I love animals. Over the course of my life, I've had several pets that were dear to me and they were always treated like members of my family. I was raised with five dogs that my father brought into the house as puppies because he loved animals too. Four of them (2 males and 2 females) were brothers and sisters from a neighbor's litter of German Shepherds and we named them King, Duke, Queenie, and Duchess. In fact, we referred to them as 'The Royal Court'. The fifth puppy (male) came from another neighbor and I remember some people referred to him as a mongrel, a term that I personally dislike. He was a cross between a St. Bernard and something else (I don't remember because I was so young), and we named him Champ. When I became an adult, got married, had a daughter, and it was time to get her a pet, I decided to 'jump the fence' and bring home a kitten (female) from a litter that was offered to me by a co-worker. We named her Pebbles and because my daughter was an only child, she became her constant companion and sister (so to speak) for many years.

I am a person who values ALL forms of life created by God. But, unfortunately, I am constantly reminded that in America, my life as a Black person doesn't matter and never has throughout the course of history. As you watch and listen to the video, one can't help but wonder what happens to all of that commitment, empathy, passion, support, and sympathy when it comes to Black human lives? In many ways, we have suffered the exact same atrocities and far worst because of racism. In fact, with the exception of a few words here and there, you could actually use the same narrative and change the images in the video from animals to Black human beings and this so-called great country of ours would immediately become blind, deaf, and dumb to the problem. 

I challenge anyone who reads this post to brush up on our history and read about all of the unspeakable acts that have been committed against Black people and you will find that, much like these animals, we have been abused, captured against our will, dehumanized, discriminated against, hung from trees, marginalized, murdered in cold blood, separated from our families, sexually assaulted/raped, sold into slavery, treated like property, whipped into submission, and everything else you can imagine. What happened to the pleas for compassion and support for us? As far as I know, we never even received an apology from America for all of the un-Godliness that was (and, still is) inflicted upon us for no other reason than the color of our skin. And, why is it that no one is willing to 'stand with us' when we proclaim that Black Lives Matter, when you know all we're trying to say is that our lives matter too?

As a recent example, Colin Kaepernick dared to call attention to this problem because so many unarmed Black people are being murdered at the hands of trigger-happy police officers who always claim afterward they were 'afraid for their life'--even if the victim was laying on their back with their hands and feet in the air. It is physically impossible for someone in such a position to be a threat. And yet, we've seen time and time again examples of Caucasians assaulting police, resisting arrest, and armed with a weapon who are apprehended without being killed. Why is it that no one is willing to support Colin and the stand he is taking for fair and equal treatment of Black people under the law, which is our constitutional right as American citizens? Instead, his intentions are misconstrued and misinterpreted as disrespect for the flag and/or the national anthem, and he is blackballed from football.

For the sake of clarity, yes, the lives of every animal matters--but, the lives of every Black person matters too. What is happening to these animals is definitely wrong and it needs to stop. And yes, they deserve our help and support so by all means, feel free to respond accordingly. But, if you can't show the same care, concern, and support for Black human beings when the situation calls for it, something is wrong.


Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Monday, December 25, 2017

Merry Christmas!



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Norad Santa Sighting Near Philadelphia, PA!





Sunday, December 24, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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It's Christmas Eve!




Saturday, December 23, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Friday, December 22, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Thursday, December 21, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Monday, December 18, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Sunday, December 17, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Saturday, December 16, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Friday, December 15, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Barack Obama Will Always Be My President! ❤


This is what a real president for all of the people looks like...



Thursday, December 14, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Congrats Doug Jones & Thank U Alabama!



The #Democrats in Alabama have spoken and we have another seat @ the table!


Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Fund CHIP Now!



Unfortunately, the fight is not over for millions of children whose health care is threatened because CHIP (Children’s Health Insurance Program) is in serious need of funding. Congress recently failed to approve funding for it and parents of children with serious illnesses will soon receive letters that their coverage could be cut off next month and we can't let that happen. Also, the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) is still available. If you don’t have health insurance, go to healthcare.gov and sign up before the Friday, December 15th deadline.


Monday, December 11, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Open Letter to Paul Ryan & Republicans




Sunday, December 10, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Saturday, December 9, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Friday, December 8, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Thursday, December 7, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Sights of the Season









Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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PBG Alert



Sheri Crawley, Founder of the Pretty Brown Girl Movement, will be featured on Get Up! Mornings w/ Erica Campbell on 12/06/17 @ 9:10am ET. Tune in to hear how the movement is empowering girls of color across the globe. Check your local stations or click on the image to listen live!


Monday, December 4, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Sunday, December 3, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Quality Time w/ The Grands


Sunday, December 3, 2017
Lunch @ California Pizza Kitchen





Saturday, December 2, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
Click on the image or text link underneath to read the prayer.


Quality Time w/ The Grands


Saturday, December 2, 2017
Dickens Christmas Village @ Macy's





Friday, December 1, 2017

Countdown to Christmas



Children of Destiny Autism Prayer
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Watch your step!


This household is protected by Ladybug Home Security.





As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord...



Christian Internet Code of Ethics

As a Christian who is active on the internet,
I hold myself to certain standards of conduct:

  • I guard my online relationships.
  • I am careful to visit websites that do not compromise my life in Christ.
  • I take care that my written communications reflect Christ in my life.
  • I guard my time to assure that my time online is kept in proper balance with the rest of my life.
Visit the home page to view a more detailed version:

The Nazarene Network @ NazNet.com





April is World Autism Awareness Month!




On Newsstands Now... Get copies while supplies last!




Now Playing... The Booga Wooga on YouTube!




Proud member of OSP Group on Facebook!




Follow The Lady (Bug) on Good Reads!




Follow The Lady (Bug) on Pinterest!




Thank you President Obama for 8 great years!




Household Humor, Rules, and Membership











Deviant Art: "Cho & The Ladybug" By Cypherx





Virgo Rules in This Household!







September












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