Windy City Media Group Frontpage News

THE VOICE OF CHICAGO'S GAY, LESBIAN, BI, TRANS AND QUEER COMMUNITY SINCE 1985

home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2021-12-08
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
Donate

Sponsor


  BLACKLINES

Black in Chicago
Before we were straight or gay, we were Black
by D. Kevin McNeir
2003-03-01

This article shared 9526 times since Sat Mar 1, 2003
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


A monthly feature exploring the lives, challenges and success stories of Chicago's African-American community, starting with the premise that before we were straight or gay, we were Black.

From community activism to spirituality, Chicago's Black LGBT community continues to be on the move—making heads turn and providing opportunities for a better quality of life for sisters and brothers 'in the life.'

With that in mind, we focus this month on a new church—Praise Center Chicago, led by the Rev. Kevin Tindell; say farewell to two outstanding brothers at Horizons Community Services; and give kudos to the leaders of Chicago Black Lesbians and Gays.

Can you say 'hallelujah?'

On a very brisk Sunday morning a few weeks ago, I was invited to worship with a small but LOUD group of Christians, some who are gay or lesbian, all Black, on the campus of the University of Chicago. And it was a wonderful time for those like me who enjoy 'getting their praise on.'

According to Tindell, that's one of the reasons he was led to become a charter member of Praise Center Chicago, which is affiliated with the Church of the Full Covenant.

Not only is he the founder and senior pastor, but he also serves as the COFC board secretary and eastern regional apostle. And that's just his 'part-time gig.'

'We celebrate wholeness through the radically inclusive ministry of Jesus,' he said. 'Our church's motto—glorifying God and edifying people by reaching, teaching and unleashing power to transcend boundaries and restore hope. And while our numbers right now are small, we are finding that the way we lead praise and worship appeals to more and more Black LGBTs. It's just a matter of them finding out about us.'

The church claims about 20 members and refers to itself as a neo-Pentecostal denomination. Several members on the ministerial staff are currently receiving training at Trinity United Church of Christ under the direction of that church's pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright. And one of the most important aspects of the church, besides its openness to the 'gifts of the spirit [including speaking in tongues]' is special outreach to the Black LGBT community.

'That's what attracted me here and it's put me on an important road in terms of my own ministry,' said Minister Phyllis Pennese. 'When you're used to a Pentecostal kind of worship experience and you're out, it's difficult to find a place where you feel you can be yourself. I found that here.'

Joining Tindell and Pennese are associate ministers Marlene Brown, Eric Edwards, Pam Harris, Borris Powell and Lee Patterson. Tindell and Pennese are an awesome one-two punch. But recently Pennese announced that she will be leaving the church to form her own place of worship—something she's been praying about.

Still, Tindell continues to work with her and says it won't change their relationship. Perhaps that means we'll see new ministries developing with these two outstanding followers of Christ that will be of benefit to the Black LGBT community.

The church is currently preparing for its ordination service on Saturday, March 15 at Chicago Theological Seminar, 5757 S. University. Special guests will include Apostle Alex Byrd and Dr. Yvette Flunder. The location of the chapel will be announced. Contact Tindell at praisecenterchicago@yahoo.com

So, are you ready for a place where you can let your hair down, shout for Jesus and allow things like speaking in tongues, laying on of hands and other gifts of the spirit to become a part of your regular religious experience? If so, Praise Center Chicago may be the place for you.

Giving honor to 'The King'

While we certainly hope to talk to the new leaders of Chicago Black Lesbians and Gays as they work this year on changing the focus of the organization and bringing in a new cadre of leaders, we had to say congratulations to them for an outstanding 8th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day Breakfast, held Jan. 20. Windy City Times [and last month's BLACKlines] showed you who was there in a photospread, but the photos could not begin to describe the feelings that the Black LGBT community shared and expressed as program participants and as members in the audience.

It was a good beginning for the organization which some feel had lost its voice and direction.

According to Robert Schultz, CBLG steering committee co-chair, the organization is going through 'growing pains' but is definitely on the right track.

As always, Boris Powell, who is also a minister at Praise Center Chicago, shared his unique brand of leading a program—maybe we should call Borris 'Mr. MC.' Each speaker and musician contributed to the excellence of the program—albeit a bit too long for our taste. Vernita Gray's sharing words of encouragement and the Rev. Alma Crawford's testimony were especially moving. But by far—the best part of the morning was the sermon by the Rev. Dr. Joseph E. Hill who offered both a challenge to everyone present and gave us a sense of hope as we left.

We promise to get him for an interview. It's clear that his is a voice that must be heard in our community.

Looking ahead and reflecting on the past

It was with sadness that we said good-bye to Frank Oldham Jr. as he recently left Horizons Community Services for a great opportunity focusing on HIV/AIDS for the City of New York.

But Oldham will be back in March, on Saturday the 8th to be honored by the Southside HIV/AIDS Resources Providers (SHARP). Joining Oldham will be Phyllis D. Rodgers, director of Volunteer Services, CORE Center. Both will be presented with the Dr. Sherry L. Luck-Jarrett Excellence Award. And in addition to the wonderful dinner and live entertainment, there will be a special tribute to Bennett Williams and Derrick Hicks.

It's an evening that promises to bring a smile and tears to many of our faces.

Finally, at press time we learned that Steve Bailous has also left the fold of Horizons. We promise to corner acting director Tico Valle along with Bailous for comments on what happened and why. But for now, we wish Bailous all the best. We just hope that Chicago remains his home.


This article shared 9526 times since Sat Mar 1, 2003
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

DANCE Alvin Ailey company at Auditorium Theatre on March 2-6 2022-01-28
- Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater returns to stages on a coast-to-coast national tour starting Jan. 28 in Philadelphia; kicking off Black History Month at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. on Feb. 1; and traveling to ...


Gay News

SPORTS Bulls, Blackhawks prevail 2022-01-27
- The Chicago Bulls (30-17) defeated the Toronto Raptors (23-23) 111-105 at the United Center on Jan. 26 to pull into second place in the Eastern Conference. Nikola Vucevic hit a three-pointer from the left wing with ...


Gay News

Florida lawmakers pass "Don't Say Gay" bill, Black LGBTQ+ civil rights group responds 2022-01-25
-- From a National Black Justice Coalition press release - FLORIDA — The Florida House Education & Employment Committee has passed HB 1557, the Parental Rights in Education bill, known as the "Don't Say Gay" bill. This bill and its companion Senate bill SB 1834 would ...


Gay News

NATIONAL Trans deaths, N.J. official, political items, 'Queer Eye' 2022-01-23
- The murders of two Black transgender women in the early days of the new year struck an ominous tone in the wake of two of the deadliest years on record for transgender Americans, Gay City News ...


Gay News

Bulls, Blackhawks fall short; 'Hawks reschedule games 2022-01-22
- In NBA action, the Chicago Bulls (28-16) fell short against the defending-champion Milwaukee Bucks (29-19), losing 94-90 in Wisconsin on Jan. 21. Bulls coach Billy Donovan was livid after the game. He was upset about Bucks ...


Gay News

Planned Parenthood Illinois Action launches virtual Black Community Town Hall Series in February 2022-01-20
-- From a press release - CHICAGO - Planned Parenthood Illinois Action (PPIA) proudly announces a new Black Community Town Hall series in honor of Black History Month. The series of virtual discussions will tackle topics such as community wellness and care, ...


Gay News

Revry's Black History Month of LGBTQ-First Films and Series celebrates Black stories 2022-01-20
-- From a press release - Los Angeles - This Black History Month, Revry is programming LGBTQ-first Black stories with themes from the differently-abled, LGBTQ athletes, activists and the lesbian, trans and the cis-gender lesbian community. Over 35% of Revry's audience is ...


Gay News

Nat'l Black Justice Coalition celebrates openly LGBTQ+/SGL NAACP Image Award nominees 2022-01-18
-- From a press release - The National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC) celebrates the historic number of openly Black lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer+, and same-gender loving (LGBTQ+/SGL) nominees for the NAACP Image Awards. The Image ...


Gay News

SPORTS Bulls and Blackhawks both lose 2022-01-18
- Jan. 17 was not a good night for Chicago's NBA and NHL teams. The Chicago Bulls (27-15) lost their fourth straight game, 119-106 to the Memphis Grizzlies (31-15) in Tennessee. After snacking on teams with weaker ...


Gay News

Aurora mayor joins crowded GOP field in race for governor 2022-01-18
- Aurora Mayor Richard Irvin announced his candidacy for governor of Illinois on Jan. 17, joining a slew of Republicans hoping to challenge Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker in November, NBC Chicago reported. Irvin, a Black Republican and ...


Gay News

Blackhawks win fourth straight; Bulls lose third consecutive game 2022-01-16
- The Chicago Blackhawks (15-18-5) defeated the Anaheim Ducks (19-15-7) 3-0 at the United Center on Jan. 15. It was Chicago's fourth consecutive victory. There were 73 combined shots between the Blackhawks and the Ducks—the most in ...


Gay News

Blackhawks beat Canadiens; DeBrincat named to All-Star team 2022-01-14
- The Chicago Blackhawks (14-18-5) skated to their third consecutive win on Jan. 13, defeating the Montreal Canadiens (7-24-5) 3-2 in a game marked by a pre-event tribute to Andrew Shaw, who played for both teams. Dominik ...


Gay News

Amariey Lej, 20 year old Black trans woman, killed in Pennsylvania 2022-01-12
-- From a NBJC press release - WILKINSBURG, PA- The National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC) mourns the loss of Amariey Lej, a 20-year-old Black transgender woman. Amariey was shot and found lying in the streets of Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania, on January 1, 2022. Lej ...


Gay News

Duval Princess, 24 year old Black trans woman, found shot to death in Florida 2022-01-12
--From a NBJC press release - FLORIDA — The National Black Justice Coalition mourns the loss of Duval Princess, a 24-year-old Black transgender woman. Princess was found shot in a car at Highland Square shopping center in Jacksonville, Florida, on January 3, ...


Gay News

Bulls win by 46; Blackhawks also prevail 2022-01-12
- The Chicago Bulls (27-11) got back on the winning track Jan. 11, routing the Detroit Pistons (9-31) 133-87 at the United Center. The Bulls only led 61-52 at the half. However, Chicago outscored Detroit 36-14 in ...


 



Copyright © 2022 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 
 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS







Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Donate


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.