It’s hard to believe that our time here in Alabama is coming to a close. You can see that we had a full day yesterday here. We hope you’ll tune in to our social media channels – Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube – to keep up with the experiences in Alabama. Thank you for joining us as a pilgrim through prayer and interactive learning opportunities. If you have any questions or would like to share your own reactions to the learning experiences, please reach out to Rachel, our Communications Director via email or by calling or texting 315-741-1100. You can also access this digest on our website and all the digests (once they’ve been sent!) on our Racial Justice and Reconciliation page.
Today, our day begins with the Eucharist at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in Birmingham.
About the St. Mark’s
“The idea of an organized Black Episcopal congregation had its inception at the Fifty-first Annual Convention of the Protestant Episcopal Church of the Diocese [of Alabama]. This meeting was held in Alabama in 1882.
“In 1890 the idea of a Black Episcopal Church School was presented to Bishop Wilmer by Mr. C.V. Auguste along with respected members of the Black community. It was felt that a school would be beneficial to the Black community.
“St. Mark’s School commenced in 1892 with seven grades and 47 students. The school was located in Birmingham, Alabama at Eighteenth Street North and Avenue C. St. Mark’s School presented one of few viable educational opportunities for people of color. During its existence the school had its share of woes experiencing financial uncertainty and a fire in 1905. Yet, the school would always rise above the misfortune. For many years St. Mark’s School was one of the main avenues for an academic education of Blacks in the state and perhaps the south.” (Source)
Praying Together as Pilgrims
Join us in this prayer:
O God our King, by the resurrection of your Son Jesus Christ
on the first day of the week, you conquered sin, put death to
flight, and gave us the hope of everlasting life: Redeem all
our days by this victory; forgive our sins, banish our fears,
make us bold to praise you and to do your will; and steel us
to wait for the consummation of your kingdom on the last
great Day; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Learning More as Pilgrims
- Learn more about the history of the relationship between the Episcopal Church and Black Americans here.
Our next stop is the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute and a stop at the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church.
We had originally planned on visiting these sites on Day 1, but travel difficulties meant that we had to reschedule for today. Learn and pray through these experiences here.
Reflecting Together as Pilgrims
Take some time to reflect and pray about the experiences from this Pilgrimage Day 3. If you’re not sure where to start, here are some wondering prompts that can help you to get started:
- I wonder what surprised me the most about today’s experiences.
- I wonder where I saw God at work in the stories and experiences today.
- I wonder what part of the stories I heard today will stay with me.
- I wonder where I am in these stories I heard today.
- I wonder where I and these stories are in the big story of the people of God.
- I wonder what’s next in this big story of the people of God.