As the new year embarks on its second month, we celebrate Black History Month throughout our community and congregation. 2020 is no different, with events planned at All Souls and throughout Tulsa. The proximity of the centennial of the 1921 Race Massacre is a focus for many—in our hearts, in our minds, in our conversations, and in our community. Keep the conversation going and your hearts open as we step into February to celebrate Black History (aka American History) and the Black Excellence of our past and of today. Here are some ways you can engage, celebrate, connect, and learn.
Read, Watch, & Listen
Walking in Purpose & Black Excellence In Tulsa by All Souls member Nehemiah D. Frank and other writings on Black Wall Street Times.
Keep up with the voices and journalism of Tulsans doing the work today. Pick up your copy of the Oklahoma Eagle at church. Cruise through the articles on newtulsastar.com, including this historical dive of Greenwood District founder, O.W. Gurley contributed by All Souls member Carlos Moreno.
Tune into Focus: Black Oklahoma on Public Radio Tulsa, launching in February! Featuring co-host, Arielle Davis and Kolby Webster, the hour-long news program will feature interviews supported by stories on current topics and events affecting Black culture, including news, politics, current affairs, education, family, health, relationships, law, finances, business, arts and culture, spirituality, technology, sports and more. (Shout out to Kolby. He worked with us at Circle Cinema with the Tulsa Premiere of Come Sunday!)
Go see World Stage Theatre Company’s I Have Before Me a Remarkable Document Given to Me by a Young Lady From Rwanda, February 6-8 at Tulsa PAC. Tickets
Inspired by the real life experiences of Rwandan refugees in the UK, this play tells the story of two people from entirely different worlds who meet at a refugee center in London. Juliette is a young Rwandan asylum seeker, determined to write a book on the genocide that killed her family. Simon is a middle-aged failing novelist whose job is to help refugees write.
Do all the things
Take a docent led tour of John Hope Franklin Reconciliation Park. The 45 minute tour includes information about the 1921 Massacre, African American and Native American migration, Greenwood Historic District, and Black Wall Street. Click here to schedule.
Memories & Inspiration: The Kerry and C. Betty Davis Collection of African American Art has 62 selected works from the collection and is on view now through July 26. Visit this show at Gilcrease with All Souls Young at Heart group on Thursday, February 20. They will shuttle from the church at 10 a.m. All ages welcome!
Take Action, Lean In, and Connect at All Souls
Justice for Julius screening of The Last Defense by Viola Davis presented by All Souls Criminal Justice Outreach
Sunday, February 2 | 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.
Julius Jones is on death row in Oklahoma, despite maintaining his innocence and compelling evidence that he was wrongfully convicted. Join us for a screening of the documentary The Last Defense, produced by Viola Davis, about the details of Jones’s case. We will also host a Q&A session with Jones’s family, worship leader and social advocate Cece Jones-Davis. Learn more at: justiceforjuliusjones.com.
Watching Watchmen: Race and Responsibility in Tulsa with Sean Latham & Nehemiah Frank
Wednesday, February 19 | 7 p.m.
Sean Latham, Director of the Oklahoma Center for the Humanities, will frame a discussion about Race and Responsibility in Tulsa around the HBO series, Watchmen with Nehemiah D. Frank, founder and editor of The Black Wallstreet Times. They will delve into the new HBO Watchmen series specifically and comic book superheroes in general, looking at their history understanding their relevance and gauging their impact.
Flourish for People of Color with Mariela Pérez-Simons
Wednesday, February 12 | 7 p.m. | Second Wednesdays
Flourish is a sacred circle that centers the spiritual needs of people of color and promotes deep relationship-building, belonging, exquisite self-care, healing, cultivating delight/joy, embodied practices, liberation, empowerment, and vitality. We call into this space friends and members who identify as people of color.
Join Francia Allen for Curious Conversations
Wednesday, February 26 | 7 p.m. | Third Wednesdays
Curious Conversations is all about fostering strong and meaningful connections through one-on-one guided conversations. Discover commonalities and celebrate each other’s differences! All are welcome. Curious Conversations is part of our Wednesday Connections program. Join us for dinner starting at 5:30 p.m. Childcare provided.
Take a Step Back In Time
Experience the Greenwood Cultural Center
Spend the day immersed in our historic Black Wall Street and photographic evidence of the 1921 Massacre. Hold space and absorb the photographs and anecdotes from the Massacre survivors, including visiting the Mabel B. Little Heritage House, originally owned by survivors Sam and Lucy Mackey.
Lunching with Suffragettes presented by All Souls Day Alliance
Thursday, February 13 | 11:30 a.m. | $10 DA members, $12 guests
Celebrating 100 years of women voting, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, and Ida B. Wells will join us for lunch and share their stories! RSVP by calling (918) 747-8596.
Celebrate with Community
7th Annual Black Wall Street Heritage and History
Saturday, February 15 at 11 a.m. | 36th Street North Event Center
Bring the whole family and support Black and POC artists, musicians, fashion, spoken word artist, dancers, and speakers! This year’s theme is ‘It Takes a Village to Raise a Child.’
Social Justice Story Hour: A Celebration of Black History
Thursday, February 20 at 5:30 p.m. | The Khalid Jabara ‘Tikkun Olam’ Memorial Library | 1719 S. Owassa Ave
This special Story Hour will celebrate Black history and the brilliance, strength, and love this history represents. The Khalid Jabara ‘Tikkin Olam’ Memorial Library at B’nai Emunah Preschool is an early learning library dedicated to diversity and justice.
Our ministers, worship leaders, and musicians will also celebrate Black History Month every Sunday in each of our three services, Traditional, Contemporary, and Humanist Hour. All are welcome to join us at 10 & 11:30 a.m. for services, connection, and community. Love is the Spirit of this Church. We hope to celebrate Black Excellence with you.
What is your favorite way to celebrate Black History Month? What else should be on our list? We would love to hear from you!