BOOKS, ENTERTAINMENT FASHION, FOOD, MUSIC, TRAVEL 25 – Volunteer In Africa For A Memorable Experience 31 – What Shall I Tell My Children

Who Are Black? 43 – Visiting Lagos: An Intensely Cultural Experience 47 – Consecration And Commission: Biblical Foundation (Pt. 3) 51 – Ode To A Playwright – August Wilson 54 – Favorite Thanksgiving Dishes BUSINESS, EDUCATION, FINANCE 13 – Schoolhouse To Jailhouse 21 – Testimony – “All Up In Africa” 29 – Report A Tax Smart Transfer Of Retirement Accounts COVER STORY 8 – A Season Of Thanksgiving 38 – Samuel Akainyah: Reflections Of A Grateful Son HEALTH & FITNESS 15 – Count Every Single Blessing 19 – Desperate Church Wives 35 – The “Art” Of Compassion 63 – Aging/Deterioration vs. Rejuvenation WORLD NEWS Special Pullout Section: Hurricane Katrina

38 51



11/2005 TRUMPET

Writing for a publication like the Trum pet is similar to writing for a publication like Ebony. These kinds of publications are prepared long before they “hit the stand.” That means the authors have to write their articles “in advance.” They have to write as if the material about which they write is current or has already happened when, in fact, they are writing six to eight weeks before the magazine goes to the publisher. The average reader almost never notices that the “news” events which appear in magazines like Jet (which are weekly) are current events kind of articles. The articles which appear in Ebony, on the other hand, are “feature” articles. They are not time-sensitive. It is the same with the Tr umpet. As I have to think ahead each month of what is going to happen for the following month, I have to prepare my articles as if we were in the month during which the readers will be seeing the article. That sometimes gets “tricky.” Take the matter of Hurricane Katrina, for instance. Katrina happened at the end of August. The government showed just how callous and uncaring it was

Capernaum; but my mother was dying. Tom DeLay had finally gotten caught! He had been indicted not once but twice and his illegal gerrymandering of the districts in Texas negate the Black vote have been exposed for what it is; but my mother was dying. The White House Iraq Group had been exposed. The lies that they had told since 09.11.01 and the plan to take over Iraq (and secure all the oil in the Middle East for American interests!) that had been in place since 1992 was coming to light; but my mother was dying. The cooking of the books, the fixing of the facts to make it justify an illegal war was being exposed dayby-day; but my mother was dying. The politicians who had pulled the wool over Christians eyes with their lies, their deceptions and their putting all of their attention on gay marriage were being caught “with their drawers down”; but my mother was dying. Rove and Libby found themselves in the crosshairs of a Special Investigator and Grand Jury probe. Their deliberate attempts to “out” Valerie Plame to pay her husband back for daring to tell the truth about the lies told about the Bush Administration; but my mother was

A Season

about Black people and poor people during the first week of September. The Trum pet for the month of September had been “put to bed” back during August! Nothing could appear in September’s Trumpet about Katrina. As the drama continued to unfold concerning the government’s response to the Blacks in New Orleans, the days kept ticking by and the publisher kept asking us where the copy for the October T rumpet was! When we have “emergency” matters like that we don’t want the Trum pet t to be stale so we try to push the deadline back and hope that the publisher will understand. This month, however, I have been stalled not because of national emergencies. I have been stuck in my writing not because of theological, ecclesiological or sociological matters. I have found it difficult to write because my mother started dying at the end of September! As the dreary days of October dragged on and my mother moved closer and closer toward the banks of the River Jordan, I found the writing even more difficult. There was so much going on in the world around us that claimed the attention of any Christian who called herself or himself following the Carpenter from
11/2005 TRUMPET

dying. Ms. Plame who was an undercover CIA operative was married to a man high up in the Bush Administration. He found out that there was no enriched uranium being sent to or exported from Niger as lied about in the Bush “evidence” and quoted in the Presidential State of the Nation speech. He had to go! Because he dared to say that there were no weapons of mass destruction before we invaded Iraq, he had to be silenced and the White House Intelligence Group sought out to silence him. Christians needed to know that; but my mother was dying. Bush appointed an undercover conservative to the Supreme Court; but my mother was dying. I had warned the members of our congregation and the citizens of this nation prior to the election in 2004 that Christians needed to be concerned about the 2004 Presidential Election because two possible Supreme Court judges would be named by whoever was in the Oval Office; and nobody listened. I needed to speak a prophetic word to help connect the dots between what I said in the fall of 2004 and what was happening to us in the fall of 2005; but my mother was dying.


The Bush-Cheney-Halliburton financial rip-offs that were taking place not only in Iraq and Afghanistan but now in New Orleans, in Louisiana and Mississippi were matters that the Christian church needed to address; but my mother was dying. The President was trying to put onto the Supreme Court a woman who had never been a judge. Christians were coming to me asking me, “How can he do that?” I wanted to point out in a national forum that his daddy had done the same thing. Judge Clarence Thomas never sat on a judicial bench either! I needed Christians to see the games that were being played on them by the persons in whom they had put so much misplaced faith; but my mother was dying. The dramatically radical shift in the Black church’s theology was a matter that every thinking Christian of any color needed to be aware of; but my mother was dying. “New Jack” jacklegs had hijacked the theology of the Black church and robbed it of its relevance for Africans in the Diaspora who live under oppression. The Black church that led the anti-slavery movement, the Black church that was known as the “underground church,” the Black church that had led in the Abolition Movement and the Black church that had

As I pored over my Scriptures during the month of September and August, I found so many things that I needed to say to our readers as a man of faith and a follower of Him who came to set us free; but my mother was dying! Every time I picked up my pen to write, the pain of losing her settled in over me like an unending fog.

of Thanksgiving!

A Message From our CEO

Rev. Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr., Senior Pastor

produced Harriet Tubman was now a church that was interested in money, greed, private jets, Bentleys and “bling-bling.” The Black church that led in the fight to end slavery, the Black church that had led the fight to end segregation, the Black church that had led the fight to tear down the walls of Jim Crow, the Black church that had fought against Apartheid and the Black church that was responsible for so many social changes in the fabric of a garment sewn by 500 years of white racism and white supremacy was now eclipsed by a church that preached prosperity, money and “go along to get along!” The news media covered that “New Jack” church and not the historic Black church and somebody had to say something; but my mother was dying! The silliness of single-issue Christianity was being shown for what it had been. It had been used to get the vote out and get the conservatives locked back in for another term of office; but it hid the horror of all of the tax cuts (for the rich) and all of the cuts of the important social programs that made life livable for the poor in this nation. Christians were beginning to wake up and smell the oil; but my mother was dying.
11/2005 TRUMPET


I looked at my calendar after my mother’s funeral and I saw how late I was for this month’s issue in writing the “Message from our CEO.” The Lord then spoke to me and reminded me that I would be writing an article for our readers that would appear during the season of giving thanks! I felt a tremendous weight lifted up off of my shoulders because that is exactly what my mother’s dying pressured me into: A season of giving thanks! I sat in her room for two weeks and watched her die daily and the thoughts that ran through my head were nonstop. I thought about the fact that I was in the presence of a person whom I had loved all of my life! She was the first person I loved. She was the person I knew before I knew anybody else. She was the person who had carried me in her womb and as she gave me life, I was now watching her leave this life! I sat there and looked at her and gave thanks to God for all that He had given me in allowing me the privilege of being born to this woman I called “Mommy.” I thought about the smiles, the gifts, the laughter, the jokes, the Christmases as a child, the trips we took while Daddy was on vacation and I thank God for each of

them. I thought about the spankings, the whippings, my attempts to get around her iron law and I thanked God for a mother who had cared enough about me to discipline me with love. I thought about her making me go to Sunday School, to church, to BYPU, to BTU and forcing me to study every subject every teacher ever thought about teaching me from elementary school through high school and I found myself giving thanks. I would not have the degrees I have today had it not been for my mother and father pushing me. It is truly a season of thanksgiving for me. I reflect back over 64 years of a relationship and I give thanks to God for what God gave me in giving me Dr. Mary Henderson Wright. I see the members of our church now and I have done ministry with hundreds of persons across three decades of pastoring with persons who have never had a mother who took them to church. I pastor people who never had a mother to pray with them, to read the Bible to them and to sing the songs of Zion around their homes. Every time I come in contact with a person who has not been blessed by a mother like my mother I give thanks to God for her and for her strong faith (and for her sharing

Enjoy your friends and family during this season of thanks and enjoy the presence of the Lord who gives you each breath you take.
her faith with me!). This is a season of giving thanks because of the gift that God has given her in giving us his only begotten Son. This is a season of thanks because of how God keeps on giving in spite of the changes that take place in our lives politically, sociologically, racially or internationally. When we had Presidents in the Oval Office who cared about African Americans, God was still God and God was still giving us blessing after blessing. When we had Presidents in the Oval Office who hated Blacks, God was still God and God was still giving us blessing after blessing. During this season of thanks I invite you to join with me in reflecting back across the years. I invite to reflect upon God’s goodness, God’s grace, God’s love, God’s mercy and God’s faithfulness! Presidents may change but the Prince of Peace does not. Give thanks to God! Policies may change but the peace of God that passes all understanding does not. Give God the Praise!

Good men may surround any given President and bad men may surround any given President but goodness and mercy still follows us all the days of our lives. Give God the Praise! In the long saga of our story we have bright luminaries like Denmark Vessey, Nathaniel Turner, Gabriel Prosser, Harriet Tubman and Jarena Lee. At the same time, however, we have Uncle Toms and handkerchief heads who turned in Africans who dared to be free. At the same time we have Africans who did not want to be African. They desperately wanted to be white. They wanted to be accepted by “Massa” and they did anything they could to sell their own people out. That is nothing new, my beloved. But that is not what is important! What is important is that while we had both Bishop Henry McNeil Turner and Bishop Chitling Switch (“Help me get rich, somebody!”) we also had a God who does not change, a God who is greater than all of our human schemes and a God who is watching over us right now! Give God the Praise! Enter into this season of thanks remembering who God is and how great God is. Enjoy this season of thanks by verbally letting God know and others know that

God is our God. It is God who has made us and not we ourselves! Enjoy your friends and family during this season of thanks and enjoy the presence of the Lord who gives you each breath you take. I invite you to enjoy, experience and enter into this season of thanks with the knowledge that we are not alone! I thank you for remembering me, my sister and our family in the tremendous loss we have experienced with the homegoing of my mother; but I encourage you to rest on the promise of everlasting life as you give thanks to God for that promise. God has given my mother that gift and God promises that gift to you! Give thanks to God for the gift, for grace and for eternal life! Sincerely and lovingly yours,
PostScript Picture trumpet.eps

Rev. Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr.

11/2005 TRUMPET