Realizing that there was a need for healing, North Port St Joe community came together for a concert of community healing. Sponsored by the Project Area Committee, everyone agreed that the time had come to begin a new movement of cleaning up the community and taking a stand to better the living conditions.
North Port St Joe is currently planning renovations and development to the area bringing jobs, businesses and housing. It is estimated that 395 acres will be redeveloped. This project also sits next to the port of Port St Joe that is also under go developmental status.
The event was opened with a son by Pastor Robert Lowery of Amazing Grace Apostolic Church followed by a heartfelt welcome by Pastor Chester Davis, President of the North Pott St Joe Project Area Committee.
Mayor Bo Patterson of the City of Port St Joe was there to extend his appreciation of a community that was ready to begin their vision.
As the program progressed, many participants sang songs, gave inspirational readings, and shared in their history and their hopes for the community.
Speaker for the occasion was Ms. Jacqueline Miles, owner/publisher of The Pensacola Voice Newspaper. Ms. Miles told of how The Pensacola Voice was formed and some of the trials and successes that the paper endured. “When we first began the paper, my dad saw a need for black people to have an outlet to speak about things going on in our community,” she said. “We’ve celebrated our 50th anniversary and are now expanding. Sometimes in the course of growing, everyone is not going to want to see you grow. You must surround yourselves with like-minded individuals that can understand where you are going and want to be a part of that. Don’t look back. The bible talks about when Lot and his wife left Sodom they were told not to look back. His wife looked back and she was turned into a pillar of salt. When you look back, you can’t move forward. Don’t turn into that pillar of salt.” When we talk about healing, sometimes healing takes a process. It doesn’t always come overnight, but if you are willing to work through the objections of why you can’t and look at why you can, it can be accomplished. Healing takes place not only physically, it takes place mentally. If you constantly think of” the back when”, you will never heal. Look forward; plan your future; if not for you, then for your children. When you have someone that is in your ear, saying “they aren’t going to let you do that”, first ask who is they?’ then say I’ve got to go now and remember YOU control your destiny. Anything worth having requires hard work and a positive attitude.” She said. “We must have faith. We must be willing to get out of the boat. Jesus told Peter to get out of the boat and when he did, he walked on the water. We too, must get out of the boat and remember-If God be for us, who can be against us?”
Afterwards, a light lunch of hot dogs, hamburgers, salad, potato chips and beverages were served to the crowd.
A Call to Worship by Apostle Tia Kilpatrick brought the crowd back to a second segment with more musical selections. “We are so glad that everyone came out to enjoy this event,” said Pastor Davis. We look forward to everyone getting involved and getting our community ready for greater things.