By Ralph White
The Stockton Black Leadership Council announces its 10th Annual Emancipation Proclamation Celebration on January 1st to celebrate 151 years of freedom from slavery in America.
The parade will begin at 12 p.m. at the San Joaquin County Fairgrounds and God’s Appreciation Dinner will begin at 5 p.m. at Ralph Lee White’s residence, 2201 East Eighth Street. The public is invited and the event is free of charge.
The parade will celebrate Blacks being freed from slavery on January 1, 1863. This date marks the beginning of Black people’s freedom in America. One thing Black people must remember to do is thank God for what He has done for us as a race and teach our children as the Hebrews do when they celebrate Passover all over the world.
The Hebrews thank God for helping them exit Egypt and teach their children and people to be thankful for all God has done for them. In return, God has made them the most successful people in the world because they are the only people who have shown thanks to God for freeing them from 439 years of being enslaved.
We, as Black people in America must wake our people up- every minister must preach during the month of December about January 1st and what God has done for us as a people. God spoke to Abraham Lincoln, then the President, and told him to sign the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863.
About 99.9% of the Black People in America do not know the beginning date of their freedom in America. We must first look at the Bible in Exodus Chapter 40 where God told Moses to set up his tabernacle on the first day of the first month, just as God told Abraham they would be enslaved for 400 years, and they were, 439 years.
Blacks were enslaved in America for over 200 years. God told Moses to tell Pharaoh to “Let my people go.” God told a man with a biblical name, Abraham Lincoln, who with a stroke of the pen freed Black people from slavery in America. That was the first and the last time on January 1, 1863, that the White House was open for official business. So one must examine in 150 years, a short period of time, that it is an insult to God to not show him some love and respect at least on the day he freed 3.5 million Black people in America.
This is why the Stockton Black Leadership Council for the last ten years has celebrated January 1st. It is time that we as Black people stop and pause for one day out of the year and thank God collectively for what he has done for us 150 years ago.
Every month we recognize some kind of day – Independence Day, Passover, St. Patrick’s Day, Cinco de Mayo, etc. What day have we set aside to thank God for enabling us as Black people? January 1st is our opportunity to give thanks for our freedom.