October 6, 2013 |
FOR 107 years old, Calvary Baptist Church isn't showing any signs of slowing down. The West Philadelphia congregation is led by a dynamic music ministry that keeps worshippers on their feet, and a powerful preacher, Pastor Garth G. Gittens, who's the host of a daily podcast on Praise 103.9FM. Calvary, which celebrates its 107th anniversary this weekend, is about to start a multimillion-dollar renovation project that will expand the church's seating capacity, add commercial space for small businesses and include a community center.
September 23, 2013 |
THE REGION Bernard Gutkowski has spent much of his 65 years on earth inside the walls of the Sacred Heart Church in the Swedesburg section of Bridgeport. That's where Gutkowski was an altar boy, got married, and later brought his children on Sundays. "This church is my whole life," said Gutkowski, who has served on several church boards and runs a funeral home in the Montgomery County town. Last week, Gutkowski and other parishioners learned their church was one of 46 in the Philadelphia area that are next to undergo a review as the archdiocese assesses its parish structure.
September 15, 2013 |
MT. CARMEL Baptist Church is a West Philadelphia landmark, a place of worship where political heavy hitters come to pray, and a force for social change in its neighborhood and beyond. We talked with the church's pastor, the Rev. Albert F. Campbell, about his congregation's beliefs, its good works, its considerable history and its challenges in the here and now. Who we are: Campbell described Mt. Carmel as a "traditional Baptist church" that has evolved and adapted to the community around it. When Campbell, 81, became pastor 47 years ago, the congregation was made up of neighborhood residents, who'd walk to the church every Sunday with their families, he said.
June 14, 2013 |
WORSHIPERS at the historically Hispanic church La Milagrosa will gather tonight to begin praying a novena, nine straight nights of prayer, in hopes of keeping the small Catholic chapel in Spring Garden from being sold and closed for good on June 30. "In our Catholic faith, we are told that if we pray with faith and it is God's will, some things are granted," Maria Miranda, one of the leaders of Salvemos La Milagrosa , or Save La Milagrosa, said...
May 14, 2013 |
The Rev. Myrtle Daniels stepped up to the altar and switched on a reading light. Lucile Stewart-Mitchell took her seat at the piano, pressing open a hymn book. Karyn Fisher turned down music playing on an iPad. "We've had a busy week," Daniels announced, facing a dozen congregants gathered Sunday morning at Mount Zion A.M.E. in Woolwich Township. A week earlier, someone had rearranged the letters on the sign outside the tiny church, defacing it with a racist - and misspelled - message: No Nigers Welcome.
May 9, 2013 |
The sign adjacent to historic Mount Zion A.M.E. Church in Woolwich Township, a one-story white frame building, usually reads, "All Are Welcome. " But on Sunday, parishioners discovered vandals had scrambled the letters to produce "No Nigers Welcome. " So the hoodlums were racist and stupid. But they were meddling with the wrong church. All 11 congregants. "I thought people had gotten past that," said the Rev. Myrtle Daniels, who was a Freedom Rider in Mississippi in the 1960s before moving north for school and a more tolerant racial climate.
April 9, 2013 |
For the six folks who are often the only congregation at the Old Caln Meeting House near Coatesville, the simple structure on a country road is an old, old relative that gets considerable care. But when an architect climbed an outside ladder in March 2012 to look into the attic, he blanched, according to congregation member Adrian Martinez. "He said, 'Why is this building still standing?' " Fair question. The older section was built in 1726, the other in 1801. The concern was not with age, but construction.
April 1, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - President Obama and the first family walked from the White House across Lafayette Square to attend Easter worship at St. John's Church, their most frequent religious venue while in Washington. The Obamas worshipped at St. John's on Easter of 2009, and they have visited the Episcopal congregation, which is led by the Rev. Luis Leon, numerous times, including last year. With Obama there, Leon took a shot at political conservatives, arguing that some conservative positions are holding people back.
March 11, 2013 |
The Rev. Dr. Agnes W. Norfleet's call to the ministry was clear, but the answer wasn't. The student who would become the first female pastor/head of staff at Bryn Mawr Presbyterian Church, one of the largest - and wealthiest - congregations in the area, wasn't sure she wanted to be a pioneer. In the 1970s, "women were going to seminary, but there was a resistance to women getting called in church [leadership] positions," Norfleet said. So she went to college to study French.
February 13, 2013 |
Ronald E. Evans cherishes the ceramic pitcher and matching washbasin his grandmother brought to Camden from North Carolina. So he carefully placed these heirlooms on a table at St. Bartholomew's Church - to make a point. "People forget that they didn't get here on their own," said Evans, 81, organizer of a program to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation. "We got here on the backs of those who came here before us," he added. "And the story's not over yet. " The George Murry Fellowship Hall at the church - the heart of black Catholicism in Camden County for more than 60 years - filled with people Saturday afternoon for the observance of Abraham Lincoln's proclamation.