Christine Weerts
Christine Weerts

Christine Weerts, author of “Heroes of Faith: Rosa Young,” directs the senior choir at Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Autauga County, Ala., founded in 1922 through the ministry of African American missionary Rosa J. Young. She has degrees in music (BA) and religion (MA) and is a freelance writer.

How My Dad Earned His Place In The Greatest Generation

More than 16 million Americans fought in World War II. The fewer than 325,000 still with us deserve our attention, our love, and our unending gratitude.

Grandson Revives Fourth-Generation African-American Family Farm From Thanksgiving Tragedy

Talking about that Thanksgiving tragedy 19 years ago, Chris Wyatt weeps openly. Today, he’s carrying on his granddad’s legacy as an African-American small farmer who owns his land.

How Canvassing For A Local Candidate Filled Me With Hope During A Divisive National Election

While national campaign rhetoric can be both divisive and dispiriting, getting involved in a local campaign was edifying and encouraging.

This Great American Went From Dropping Out In Seventh Grade To Helping End Polio Across The World

James Steele rose from a middle-school dropout from the ‘hood’ to the president of his local Rotary Club. Now, he’s helping take down polio once and for all.

Remember The 33 Sailors Lost Five Years Ago In The Worst Maritime Disaster In Decades

After three hours battling the brutal storm and winds recorded at 120 mph, the battered old ship began to finally break down. El Faro was in trouble.

How Mask Mandates Can Make Life Confusing For The Elderly, Young, And Hearing-Impaired

Since COVID-19 mask mandates and social distancing, my mother has lost much of her ability to navigate through the hearing world, decreasing her independence and confidence.

‘Socially Distanced’ Funerals Inflict Even More Suffering On The Bereaved

The mourning of a loved one is best done with those who knew and loved him: family, friends, and church members. It’s hard to do alone.

This American Folk Legend Made His Name In Hard Times

‘The songs of Stephen Foster…have been a source of inspiration to every writer of popular songs.’ While deeply influential, Foster’s short life was not without controversy or hardship.

55 Years After Alabama’s Voting Rights March, Meet The Marcher With The Cracker Jack Shoes

Somewhere along the 55-mile voting rights march from Selma to Montgomery in 1965, 15-year-old Betty Anderson, whose father was a shoemaker, wore a large hole in her shoe. But that didn’t stop her.

Meet The Black Composers And Singers Who Revolutionized Gospel Music

These composers and singers of the faith championed a musical style that crosses denominations and transcends race: black gospel music.

Selma, Alabama’s First Black Church Is Still Going Strong. Take A Look At Its Amazing Legacy

First Baptist has always had strong members whose faith, tested and tried with slavery, Jim Crow segregation, intimidation, violence, and even a devastating tornado, triumphed over all.

‘Can This Be Hell?’ This Month We Remember Those Who Died Fighting For Freedom

In the bleak midwinter 155 years ago this month, my great-great-Uncle Cornelius M. Dearth died here — on the grounds of the Civil War POW camp in Andersonville, Georgia. He was 22.

Amid Poverty, This Remarkable Alabama Woman Changed The Lives Of More Than 20 Foster Children

Thelma Kennedy, a 78-year-old Alabama woman, had a hard life. But that didn’t stop her from pouring herself into her six kids and more than 20 foster children — and everyone else she met.

How This Slave Descendant Celebrates Juneteenth In Alabama, And You Can Too

‘I have always loved listening to the stories from ‘old times,’ and I am proud of all my family has accomplished despite coming out of the horrible sin of slavery,’ says Betty Anderson, 69.

Birmingham Civil Rights Icon Leaves A Legacy Of True Anti-Racism

It was 10:22 a.m. on September 15, 1963, and a dynamite bomb had just ripped a giant hole through Sixteenth Street Baptist Church, 25 blocks away, where Chris’s daughter had gone with her mother to celebrate Youth Sunday.

Amid Politician Preening, Participants In The Original Selma March Share Their Stories

The solemn march of solidarity, attended by people of all races and ages, gives a sense of the courage and commitment of ‘ordinary people who did extraordinary things.’

9 Famous Spirituals To Enlighten Your Understanding Of Black American History

Our senior choir sings spirituals year round, because we love the expression of praise and worship of Christ, the sharing of a gospel, reflected in sweet poetry and lush melody.

Riveting Stories Of Black American History From The Backwoods Of Alabama

You might not have heard of these less celebrated Black History Month heroes, but their lives of faith and service are worthy of recognition.