This Week on American Black Journal:

The Black Church’s role spreading hope, support and healing during the holiday season

The holiday season is a joyous time, but it can also be a time of grief, struggle and insecurity for many families. As nationwide inflation continues to increase food and retail prices, families bear the brunt of those costs financially and emotionally. Data from Feeding America shows that, in Michigan, one in nine people face hunger, and that rate is even higher for children — one in seven face hunger.  

Several organizations step up to help each holiday season, including the Black Church. In this installment of American Black Journal’s “The Black Church in Detroit” series, host Stephen Henderson examines the significant role of the church during the holidays to provide relief, support and hope for the community. 

Henderson sits down with Rev. QuanTez Pressley of Third New Hope Baptist Church, Pastor Semmeal Thomas from City Covenant Church, and Dr. Portia Lockett, Director of Spiritual Care & Community Affairs at the Detroit Medical Center, to talk about how the Black church’s role as a safe place takes on added importance during the holidays. And, they offer insights from their own personal losses.  

They talk about food and other necessities provided by the church, and the emotional support that’s offered to those suffering from grief over the loss of a loved one, a divorce, unemployment, or another traumatic event. Plus, the religious and community leaders talk with Henderson about the importance of mental health and mindfulness during the holiday season, and why individuals should speak up or seek help if they need it. 

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Watch American Black Journal on Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 9:30 a.m. on Detroit Public TV, WTVS-Channel 56.