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52nd National Convention C O V E R A G E “Clothed with Strength” s34 T H E E C U M E N I C A L S E R V I C E Rev. Dr. Teresa Fry Brown delivered the invocation at the 52nd National Convention’s Ec-umenical Worship Service with an appeal for God’s presence to fill the room. “Help us this morning to worship you in spirit and truth,” Soror Brown said. “To sing and not signify, to dance and not demonize, to praise and not perform, to give and not gossip, to listen to your spirit move and not to control the spirit. Help us, God, to be transformed and not trivialized.” When she ended with an “Amen,” it was clear that the Toyota Center, home of the National Basketball Associa-tion’s Houston Rockets, had transformed from a sports arena into a true house of worship. The service began with National Chaplain Bishop Vashti Murphy Mackenzie delivers the message for the Ecumenical Service during the National Convention. PHOTO BY DONNAMARIA JONES selections from the Delta Convention Choir, including “Lord, You are Good” and “Praise Him.” Li-turgical dancers, waving red and white flags, led the processional of Delta clergy, including worship lead-er Rev. Dr. Gwendolyn E. Boyd, 22nd National President. As is customary during ecumen-ical services, representatives of var-ious faiths read from sacred texts. Bro. Robert S. Muhammad, the Southwest Regional Representative of the Nation of Islam, dedicated his Quran readings to the memory of the 22 Founders, Dr. Paulette Walker, Na-tional DELTA SIGMA THETA SORORITY, INC. President, and Past National Presidents - especially 10th National President Dorothy I. Height, who he called the “mother of the Million Man March.” Rabbi Samantha Kahn, of Congre-gation Emanu El, then read a psalm. Lois Hardt, of First Unitarian Uni-versalist Church of Houston, shared an essay followed by The Very Rev. George Okeahialam, Regional Supe-rior of the Missionary Society of St. Paul North America, reading a pas-sage from the Gospel of John. Soror Walker brought greetings, reiterating Delta’s commitment to celebrating the aspects of various faiths. “We embrace our interfaith phi-losophy,” Soror Walker said. “We in- BY TIA MITCHELL


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