Events planned to honor Emanuel AME shooting victims, families on 3rd anniversary

Mother Emanuel AME (Provided)
Mother Emanuel AME (Provided)

Mother Emanuel AME Church is planning several events commemorating the third anniversary of the mass-shooting there on June 17, 2015, which left 9 people dead.

"Several organizations have partnered ... to provide opportunities for citizens to engage in meaningful dialogue about unity among all races,” said Rev. Eric Manning, pastor of Mother Emanuel AME Church.

“In addition to honoring the lives and legacies of the Emanuel 9 each year during the month of June, we are committed to speaking out against gun violence each and every day and striving towards achieving racial reconciliation,” Manning said.

Following is a list of events taking place at Emanuel AME:

  • June 17, 9:30 a.m. – Worship Service: A special service in remembrance of the Emanuel 9 and recognition of the five survivors will be held with guest preacher Reverend Matthew L. Watley, Executive Pastor of the Reid Temple AME Church in Glenn Dale, Md.
  • June 20, 6 p.m. – Community Bible Study: Bible study will be facilitated by Reverend Eric Manning and Reverend Anthony Thompson, husband of Myra Thompson – one of the Emanuel 9. The Praise and Worship Team from Seacoast Church will join in an evening of worship and remembrance.
  • June 21, 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. - Calling All Colors: Local middle school students will convene for interactive sessions addressing issues of tolerance, respect, inclusion and unity with community leaders, educators, elected officials and artists.

A Rally for Unity is planned for June 23, 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m., at Marion Square. The rally is intended to be a call to action to the public to end gun violence and achieve racial reconciliation. Rock & Roll Hall of Famer Joan Baez will provide entertainment at the rally.

A gospel performance with the theme “We Survive” to honor the Emanuel 9 is scheduled for June 24 at 4:30 p.m. Performers include the Mt. Moriah Missionary Baptist Church Choir and several others.

Other events include:

  • A Moment of Silence each day in June at the John L. Dart Library, 1067 King Street, Charleston, to honor the life of librarian Cynthia Graham Hurd.
  • A celebration of the Life and Legacy of Cynthia Graham Hurd, June 16-30, at the Charleston County Public Library, 68 Calhoun Street, Charleston. Selected materials on Mother Emanuel AME Church and the Emanuel 9 will also be on display.
  • Acts of Kindness, June 18-23, at the Cynthia Graham Hurd St. Andrews Library, 1735 Woodmere Drive, Charleston. The acts of kindness are to honor Cynthia Graham Hurd.
  • Second Annual Charleston Forum, June 21, 7:30-9:30 p.m., Charleston Music Hall, 37 John Street, Charleston. The Charleston Forum is a community project that strives to provide a dialogue on sensitive issues.