Natchitoches’ 2022 Black History Program – “Unity for a Stronger Community”

Regine Bell hosted the 2022 Black History Month program, Saturday, February 19. The theme of the program was “Unity for a Stronger Community”. The idea for the program came to the organizers as they realized that while Natchitoches was celebrating Black History Month with a parade, no program was scheduled. They decided a program was in order and asked Pastor Babers who graciously offered the use of his church.

The church sanctuary was packed with community leaders and citizens who gathered to honor the memory of Pastor Carl Means who served the Christian Outreach Church for over 40 years also serving two terms on the Natchitoches Parish School Board, one of them as its president. He was, in the words of one of the speakers, “everything a man should be.”

The event was opened by the Natchitoches Police Department’s Honor Guard presenting the colors for the Pledge of Allegiance, followed by a rendition of “Lift Every Voice and Sing”, the Black National Anthem, by Brandol King-Willis. LaTonia Mims gave the welcoming remarks while Regine Bell introduced the speakers and presented awards. Natchitoches Mayor Ronnie Williams and Police Chief Nikeo Collins both addressed the assembly as did Mental/Behavioral Health Professional Jane Rubunya Petite.

The New Image Mimes and Dominion Dance Team gave superb performances, a small demonstration of the talents of the young people in our community.

Activist and community leader, Norris G. Guillot of Alexandria delivered the evening’s keynote address. After the benediction, the attendees were treated to a superb supper in the church fellowship hall.

The 2022 Black History Program was a success by any measure. The Natchitoches Parish Journal extends its best wishes to all who contributed to a wonderful evening. We look forward to next year’s event.

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