The Role of the Black Church in Family Literacy

The Role of the Black Church in Family Literacy

The Role of the Black Church in Family Literacy

The Role of the Black Church in Family Literacy

Synopsis

"Based upon a review of black church literacy efforts in four denominations and based upon interviews with church leaders and members, the author suggests that the black church can serve its community as a vehicle for literacy development - using its resources, influence, history, social richness, and cultural heritage as a basis for achievement." Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Excerpt

As the black church is the strongest institution within the black community, and has historically provided political, social, and educational leadership for black people in America, it is the aim of this volume to examine the church and its history from the perspective that it is an untapped resource in dealing with illiteracy and educational failures among black people; in building incentives for achievement; and in strengthening the overall educational effort.

Based upon a review of literacy efforts in four denominations (Baptist, A.M.E., A.M.E. Zion and CME), and based upon interviews with church leaders and members, this volume examines the church from the perspective that it can serve its community not only as a fellowship and community center, but as a vehicle for literacy development— using its resources, influence, history, social richness and cultural heritage as a basis for achievement.

The term literacy refers not simply to the technical skills of reading and writing, but to critical thinking skills; one's sense of self worth, self-pride and to the ability to utilize socioeconomic, educational and human resources effectively. Family literacy refers to the ability of the nuclear family and extended family not only to read, write and speak effectively, but to evaluate, critically analyze and utilize socioeconomic, educational and human resources for the benefit of the group and the benefit of individual family members. Illiteracy refers to the absence of all or part of these defined skills.

Above all, the purpose of this volume is to provide concrete ideas and suggestions in very simple language based upon church history for those who will work to establish family literacy programs through local churches. It is the hope of this author that this volume will provide ministers, church leaders, members, and community volunteers with practical ideas and suggestions for alleviating some of the complex problems associated with education in the black community.

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