On Sunday, January 20, the Philadelphia Council of Clergy, Inc. will celebrate its 17th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service at From the Heart Church Ministries of Philadelphia, 3600 N. 20th Street, Philadelphia, Pa. The Devotional Service will start at 5:30 p.m., and the official program, including an awards segment, starts promptly at 6 p.m.
According to Archbishop Anthony Floyd, CEO and president, “The Philadelphia Council of Clergy, Inc. is the largest African-American ministers’ organization in Philadelphia.” The 17th Annual MLK Day of Service event is done in remembrance and honor of Dr. King.
“We will feature remarks from some of Philadelphia’s leading religious and elected leaders. Both of these groups were entities that Dr. King worked with, prayed with and marched side-by-side with while he lived.”
The awards and honorees for this year are:
- Measure of a Man Award will be presented to Rev. Jeffery Branson, founding pastor of From the Heart Church Ministries of Philadelphia. Branson is the host pastor of the event.
- Measure of a Woman Award will be presented to Rev. Paula Y. Branson, First Lady of From the Heart Church Ministries of Philadelphia.
- Special Recognition Award will be presented to the Honorable Senator Shirley Kitchen, 3rd Senatorial District, Philadelphia.
The From the Heart Church venue is a change of location from previous years. “We have been, for about 11 years, with Rev. James Hall of Triumph Baptist Church, where his church holds about 3,500 people,” said the archbishop.
Floyd also expressed great gratitude towards Rev. Hall for the many years of opening up his church to host this event. The new venue of From the Heart Church creates a more intimate atmosphere; the sanctuary can comfortably seat over 1,000 people, and the expense will certainly be less, as opposed to a return to Triumph Baptist.
Aside from the award presentations and the preaching of Rev. Branson, “We’ll also [be] featuring the Martin Luther King Jr. Mass Choir …; I organized that choir some 20 years ago.”
Floyd said the Philadelphia Council of Clergy was founded in 1994: “The organization consists of approximately 300 religious leaders and with over 150 pastors. The organization reaches over 44,000 members through our various churches.”
Since its inception, “the Philadelphia Council of Clergy has worked to be a bonding force for a large number of the smaller churches in our city,” said Floyd.
Although its genesis was rooted in the African-American community, the Philadelphia Council of Clergy is an interdenominational and multiracial membership organization with an estimated 400,000 parishioners and clergy leaders combined.
The Philadelphia Council of Clergy is an active service organization seeking to provide resources and solutions to challenges of its member churches, “We have persons with expertise in these areas (i.e., financial, medical, legal, etc.) who can counsel and instruct our members on the information necessary for solving their issues and problems,” said Floyd.
Every person that attends the 17th Annual MLK Day of Service event will receive a certificate of appreciation for their attendance and participation. For more information about the event, please contact Archbishop Anthony Floyd by calling 215-223-4979.