Black and white dating in the bible

Many worshipped in established, predominantly white congregations, but by the late 18th century, blacks had begun to congregate in self-help and benevolent associations called African Societies.Functioning as quasi-religious organizations, these societies often gave rise to independent black churches.In black churches, women generally were not permitted to preach.

Forging a unique synthesis, slaves gathered in "hush harbors" -- woods, gullies, ravines, thickets and swamps -- for heartfelt worship which stressed deliverance from the toil and troubles of the present world, and salvation in the heavenly life to come.

Yet most of the enslaved lay outside the institutional church.

They are full of dancing, clapping, screaming and shouting that may seem jarring to the untrained ear.

The church contains in full the kindness and cruelty, the fierce intelligence and the shocking ignorance, the struggles and successes, the love and yes, the bitterness and bias that make up the black experience in America.

Some white owners allowed the enslaved to worship in white churches, where they were segregated in the back of the building or in the balconies.

Occasionally persons of African descent might hear a special sermon from white preachers, but these sermons tended to stress obedience and duty, and the message of the apostle Paul: "Slaves, obey your masters." Both Methodists and Baptists made active efforts to convert enslaved Africans to Christianity; the Methodists also licensed black men to preach.

In the 1830s and 1840s, Southern churchmen undertook an active campaign to persuade plantation owners that slaves must be brought into to the Christian fold.

Because plantations were located far from churches, this meant that the church had to be carried to the plantation.

Today "the black church" is widely understood to include the following seven major black Protestant denominations: the National Baptist Convention, the National Baptist Convention of America, the Progressive National Convention, the African Methodist Episcopal Church, the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church and the Church of God in Christ.

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