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Bishop Charles E. Blake Featured in PBS’s The Black Church

Bishop Charles E. Blake, Sr. and West Angeles Church of God In Christ will be featured in “The Black Church: This Is Our Story, This Is Our Song,” airing Tuesday, February 16, 2021, on PBS.

The Black Church: This Is Our Story, This Is Our Song is a moving four-hour, two-part series from executive producer, host, and writer Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Professor at Harvard University and director of the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research.

The program explores the 400-year-old story of the Black church in America, the changing nature of worship spaces, and the men and women who shepherded them from the pulpit, the choir loft, and church pews.   It is a testament to its bedrock role as the site of African American survival and grace, organizing and resilience, thriving and testifying, autonomy and freedom, solidarity, and speaking truth to power. The documentary reveals how Black people have worshiped and, through their spiritual journeys, improvised ways to bring their faith traditions from Africa to the New World, while translating them into a form of Christianity that was not only truly their own, but a redemptive force for a nation whose original sin was found in their ancestors’ enslavement across the Middle Passage.

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The Black Church: This Is Our Story, This Is Our Song – Henry Louis Gates, left, and Bishop Charles E. Blake, Sr. of West Angeles COGIC stand inside the beautiful West Angeles Cathedral, Los Angeles, CA. 2020.

PROGRAM OVERVIEW

Host Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. explores the roots of African American religion, beginning with the trans-Atlantic slave trade and the extraordinary ways enslaved Africans preserved and adapted their faith practices under the brutal realities of human bondage. The series brings the story of the Black Church through Emancipation and Reconstruction, through the Civil Rights era up to the present — a time of renewed struggle for racial justice in America.

Along with our own Bishop Charles E. Blake Sr., renowned participants in the series include civil rights leader Ambassador Andrew Young, media executive and philanthropist Oprah Winfrey; singer, songwriter, producer and philanthropist John Legend; singer and actress Jennifer Hudson; Presiding Bishop Michael Curry of The Episcopal Church; gospel legends Pastor Shirley Caesar and Yolanda Adams.

Be transported by the powerful faith that drew African Americans from the violent margins of society to the front lines of change.

Watch The Black Church: This Is Our Story, This Is Our Song

WHEN:

  • Part I: Tuesday, February 16, 2021 at 9:00PM ET / 8:00PM CT
  • Part II: Wednesday, February 17, 2021 at 9:00PM ET / 8:00PM CT

WHERE:

Your local PBS Station, or streaming on PBS.org, PBS’ Facebook page, and YouTube

WEBSITE:

The official website includes an activities section, a coloring book for children, a Bible Study guide, recipes, music, and more. Please visit the official website HERE:

 www.pbs.org/blackchurch

CLICK BELOW to watch the extended trailer!