An audience member lifts her hand in praise as she listens to an inspirational song from the Greater Metropolitan Choir on New Year’s Day at the 75th Annual Emancipation Proclamation Day Worship Celebration at Fifth Baptist Church in Richmond’s West End.
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One after another, speakers at the 75th Annual Emancipation Proclamation Day Worship Celebration at Fifth Baptist Church in the West End passionately implored listeners to get involved in community betterment. Lynetta Thompson, president of the Richmond Branch NAACP, drew shouts of “Amen” and “Hallelujah” when she said, “Black churches, we need your help. We need for you to be a voice for the voiceless,” she stressed. She urged audience members to step outside the walls of the church to perform community service and become active in groups such as the NAACP that work for social change. The Bible, she said, has more than 300 verses speaking to seeking social justice and helping the poor.