In celebration of Martin Luther King Day and Black History Month I attended “A Service Unifying Pittsburgh to Honor the Dream” in honor of the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with Guest Preacher Bishop Walter Scott Thomas from New Psalmist Baptist Church, in Baltimore M.D.
Bishop Thomas is no stranger to Pittsburgh, the Baltimore Mega church pastor has many ties to the city of Pittsburgh and visits often; he suggests “My son in ministry, I am so proud of Reverend Dr. William H. Curtis” who is the senior pastor of Mount Ararat Baptist Church, a mega church that is located in the East End of the Pittsburgh, PA.
The evening kicked off in a packed Central Baptist church, with a feeling of hardship, struggle and even victory in the air. The praise and worship lead by Reverend Trini Massie (Minister of Worship at Ararat Baptist Church) and his own phenomenal choir Da Caz 4 Christ, screamed songs of hope and praise over everyone . The opening remarks were made by, Jonathan Wilson (President of Pittsburgh Baptist Ministers), Rob Young (Vice President of Pittsburgh Baptist Ministers), Marisa Bartley (President of the Urban League of Young Professionals) Dr. Rev John Welch (Pittsburgh Interfaith Impact Network) and ending with an introduction to Bishop Walter Thomas by Dr. William Curtis.
Bishop Thomas preached about “Leading to the End” in which he compared the story of the apostle Paul to the story and struggle of civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King. He mentioned how both Dr. King and the Apostle Paul were wrongfully and consistently questioned about their ministries and personal lives. Bishop Thomas said critics suggested Dr. King “grew up with a silver spoon in his mouth.” He compared both of their leadership styles and said that in spite of all the criticism, all would come to hear them speak. Bishop Thomas recalled the “The I Have a Dream speech, was the best speech Ive ever heard.” It changed the direction of the world, it influenced people. Bishop Walters suggested to everyone, “dont take the power of Influence for granted, all of you Pittsburgh leaders have the power of influence, that is huge, you can make an Impact right here in Pittsburgh.”
As I sat amongst the excited and encouraged and even convicted crowd that night, I could’nt help but to think of what I could do to make a greater impact in this city. We are all resposible and we all play a part wether we admit it or not. The only one that has the power to grow, cultivate and mobilize the city of Pittsburgh is you.