Episode 2: Wesley AME Church: Strategies for Thriving, The Role of the Black Church

Making a Homeplace: The Historically Black Neighborhood of Swarthmore
Making a Homeplace: The Historically Black Neighborhood of Swarthmore
Episode 2: Wesley AME Church: Strategies for Thriving, The Role of the Black Church
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For 130+ years, the Historically Black Neighborhood of Swarthmore’s community members strategically pulled together within the larger white Borough. Folks brought along religious beliefs & practices rooted in traditions of the African Methodist Episcopalian (AME) Church. In 1921, a fledgling congregation worshiped in Jones Hall at 246 Bowdoin Ave. They then bought land at 232 Bowdoin Ave for $500 & raised $11,400 for a church building, Wesley AME—finished in 1927. The church was the manifestation of the community’s shared love, respect & mutual support, functioning as a focal point of this Black homeplace, with worshippers including 6th & 7th generations.

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