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Some white owners allowed the enslaved to worship in white churches, where they were segregated in the back of the building or in the balconies.
Occasionally persons of African descent might hear a special sermon from white preachers, but these sermons tended to stress obedience and duty, and the message of the apostle Paul: "Slaves, obey your masters." Both Methodists and Baptists made active efforts to convert enslaved Africans to Christianity; the Methodists also licensed black men to preach.
Marilyn Mellowes was principally responsible for the research and development of the series God in America and has served as its series producer.
She produced and wrote From Jesus to Christ, the First Christians, a four-hour FRONTLINE series that premiered in 1998.
Eventually Obama broke with Wright and left Trinity, but his speech illuminated the role of the black church in the African American experience.
Standing apart from the dominant white society, yet engaged in a continuing dialogue with it, the church evolved with countless acts of faith and resistance, piety and protest. In its origins, the phrase was largely an academic category.
Here they provided the hard manual labor that supported the South's biggest crops: cotton and tobacco.
In the South, Anglican ministers sponsored by the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, founded in England, made earnest attempts to teach Christianity by rote memorization; the approach had little appeal.
One notable exception was Jarena Lee, who became an itinerant preacher, traveling thousands of miles and writing her own spiritual autobiography.As historian Anthea Butler has observed, the church has been profoundly shaped by regional differences, North and South, East and West, yet in both the private and public spheres, the church was, and remains, sustained and animated by idea of freedom. Many African Americans did not think of themselves as belonging to "the Negro church," but rather described themselves according to denominational affiliations such as Methodist, Baptist, Presbyterian, and even "Saint" of the Sanctified tradition.The term "the black church" evolved from the phrase "the Negro church," the title of a pioneering sociological study of African American Protestant churches at the turn of the century by W. African American Christians were never monolithic; they have always been diverse and their churches highly decentralized.During the 1770s and 1780s, black ministers began to preach to their own people, drawing on the stories, people and events depicted in the Old and New Testaments.No story spoke more powerfully to slaves than the story of Exodus, with its themes of bondage and liberation brought by a righteous and powerful God who would one day set them free.
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It is likely that the slaves who arrived in Jamestown had been baptized Catholic and had Christian names.