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Lessons from the Elders

Created on Wednesday, 11 Jan 2017 16:00:20

By: Emile Holland. Emile Holland is a sophomore at Central High School, and one of Art Sanctuary's high school interns. He recently shared his experiences as one of the interviewers for Art Sanctuary's Messages from the Elders program.   

A few weeks ago, myself and a few other members of the youth impact ministry (at Bible Way Baptist Church) had the opportunity to be apart of an amazing week-long program with the seasoned saints of Bible Way. This program, Messages from the Elders, was put on by Art Sanctuary, and during our time together, we discussed the racial issues of the past and how they still affect us today. 

During this program, our main focus was the strong black women of the Civil Rights Movement who made the sacrifices that the men couldn't. Many times, if a black man protested against the racial issues of his day, he would lose his job and probably be killed. Because of this, it was safer for women to be at the forefront of the civil rights movement. We watched the film "Standing on My Sister's Shoulders," which showed many women who were crucial in the movement.  

The seasoned saints also shared their personal experiences of dealing with racial discrimination and their everyday struggles of being an African-American in a society that wasn't truly designed for you.  Each one of the youth sat and interviewed one of our seasoned saints to hear their story and how they played a part in the Civil Rights Movement. It was great to listen to their experiences and learn a little about each of them. 

From this experience, I learned that it is important to share your story and pass on the lessons you've learned to the next generation. I am grateful for these wonderful, impactful ladies, and I am grateful to be standing on their shoulders. I hope that this program will be the beginning of something great that allows us to bridge the gap between the youth and our seasoned saints. I would like to thank Ms. Valerie Gay and the Art Sanctuary for allowing me this opportunity.

For more of Emile's work, please listen to his interviews with Ms. Maxine and Ms. Louise

For our photo gallery of moments from Messages from the Elders, please click here.

For the rest of our Messages from the Elders interviews, please visit In The Sanctuary: Author Series.

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Art Sanctuary uses the power of black art to transform individuals, create and build community and foster cultural understanding.

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