African American Churches Unite in Prayer

February 01, 2020 | Church | Heidi Baumgartner

Ten years ago, the regional African American churches of western Washington started meeting together the first Sabbath of the new year for a time of praise, prayer, preparation and preaching.

“We’re trying to get our people to come together to work as a team,” says EuGene Lewis, Washington Conference regional ministries director and pastor. “One church’s success is another church’s success. Days of Unity gives us one agenda for regional work in Washington Conference.”

The results of this joint focus will be unfolding particularly in 2020 as regional churches focus on strength, vitality and growth through an evangelism cycle.

“We have the same goals in mind,” Lewis says. “It works best when we work together to achieve our goals.”

Right now, regional leaders are praying and preparing for a Breath of Life Church evangelistic meeting scheduled for Oct. 4–17, 2020, at the Federal Way Performing Arts Center.

“The regional affairs committee prepared a regional calendar representing a series of initiatives designed to build relationships, generate interests, prepare potential candidates for baptism and encourage attendance to the fall Breath of Life series with Carlton P. Byrd,” Lewis says.

Within these plans are also goals for reengaging former members, getting involved in the community, providing acts of service and cultivating 500 Bible studies.

“As a pastoral team, we plan to give ourselves to much prayer, preaching, teaching and being led by the Holy Spirit,” Lewis says. “Although we face challenges within our respective congregations, we stand united as we seek to grow the work in our region.”

One challenge is the need for geolocation changes. Breath of Life Church, for example, in west Seattle has increasingly become a “commuter” church with members driving in from other locations around the region. The church is seeking to relocate this year closer to its target audience to better meet the needs of the south Puget Sound area.

Already Breath of Life Church is making inroads within the Federal Way area, where members are looking to relocate the church. In December 2019, Breath of Life Church members provided a Christmas giveaway at Wildwood Elementary School thanks to a connection with Mount Tahoma Church member and teacher Dian Fundisha-Bey. Members distributed gift baskets containing a $25 gift card, holiday gifts and treats for 100 students.

As the year progresses, there will be more events and opportunities for members and friends to get involved in ministry and to especially join in prayer for the growth of African American churches.