St. John AME Church Turns Into a “Church Without Walls On The Hill” At Alabama A&M University
By Jeanette Jones
It was a great day on “the Hill” and a very exciting day as we watched the young men and women from Alabama A&M University, faculty, staff, administrators, and the St. John AME Church family and friends walk into the Ernest L. Knight Reception Center until it reached a near capacity of 610.
The St. John AME Church family, under the pastoral leadership of Maurice Wright, II, and the Rev. Joretha Wright, turned the Center into a house of worship minus the church steeple. It was a great day! The music provided by the St. John praise team ushered in the spirit of worship and was maintained throughout the service. Under the direction of Ms. Shayla Wilson, the youth praise dancers—representing all age levels—continued to garner the attention of the congregation and moved the spirit in the room to another hallelujah praise level. The music ministry, led by Reginald Pearson, kept the spiritual atmosphere at a high level of praise as the choir ministered to our hearts.
The Rev. Dr. Daniel K. Wims welcomed the AAMU students, visitors, and friends on behalf of AAMU President Andrew Hugine, Jr. and shared the historic relationship between St. John AME Church and Alabama A&M University. He stated that St. John is bringing the church to the campus or “the Hill,” the place where the primary organizer of St. John, the Rev. Dr. William Hooper Councill, was also the founder of the university. In essence, Pastor Wright and the Rev. Joretha Wright are expanding their ministerial leadership in the Greater Huntsville Community to win souls and minister to the youth.
The Rev. Wright proclaimed the Word of God in a message that commanded the attention of all in attendance. His message, “In It To Win It,” captivated the audience. He highlighted four important points for the students as they engage in goal setting for the academic year: always consider the outset, the outlook, the outreach, and the outcome. After a very powerful and spirit-filled message, one student gave her life to Christ and seven others joined as affiliated members. The stewards welcomed the new members and offered words of prayer and encouragement to them.
Following the service, the pastor and members of the St. John family joined the students, faculty, and administrators as they dined in the campus cafeteria.