Friday, April 14, 2006

Black Men's Gathering in the Media

(Photo of brothers from the Gathering)

Carey Roberts, the blogger for used the Black Men's Gathering as an example of the "indomitable spirit and an unquenchable thirst for dignity" in a post called "Black Men, Soul Brothers". Below is a selection from the post:

The real answer will be found, I believe, in the hearts of Black men. It is there that an indomitable spirit and an unquenchable thirst for dignity still resides.

It was that spirit that in 1968 compelled 1,300 men in Memphis to go on strike. Weary sanitation workers picked up placards on which they had etched the phrase, "I AM A MAN." Think about those four words for a minute. It was that march for dignity that brought Martin Luther King to Memphis, only to be felled by a sniper's bullet.

That same spirit animated a group of brothers to come together to establish an organization known as 100 Black Men. Forty-odd years later, the group has grown to over 10,000 members working to improve the social and economical opportunities for all African-Americans.

That animus drove the Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity a few years ago to organize its ambitious Prostate Cancer Global Awareness Campaign. That campaign inspired Anheuser-Busch to pledge $250,000 in support of the effort. Prostate cancer, of course, if far more lethal in Black men than in Whites.

It's that ineffable character that drove the survivors of a tragic syphilis study to establish the Tuskegee Human and Civil Rights Multicultural Center. Chipping in their worn-down dimes and quarters, they hoped that future research projects would never repeat the same mistake.

That spirit is evinced every week in small town churches that dot the countryside, where all-male gospel groups give their distinctive rendition of soul-sound. It's the same spirit that guides a group of Baha'i Black men to come together once a year to chant prayers and recommit themselves to a life of service. I chanced across these men a few years ago while grieving the loss of a family member. (bold, mine)

Relieved of artificial impediments, the physical body has a remarkable ability to heal itself and regenerate its functions. So too the souls of Black men. (Read the whole post here)

This weekend I will be participating in a local Black Men's Gathering in the Greater Boston Area. Brothers are coming from all over New England to drum, pray, fellowship and explore our place in God's Plan for the transformation and salvation of humanity. To learn more about the Black Men's Gathering, visit