Religious network Trinity Broadcasting Network will partner with the city of Birmingham, Ala., to produce and broadcast a pair of special programs commemorating the 50th anniversary of the bombing at Birmingham's 16th Street Baptist Church that killed four girls on Sept. 15, 1963. The bombing is largely considered to have marked a turning point in America's historic civil rights struggle.
On Wednesday, Sept. 11, gospel singer Donnie McClurkin and actor Clifton Davis will host a special TBN-produced city-wide worship event from Birmingham's famed Kelly Ingram Memorial Park. Guests for the program will include Dr. Bernice King, daughter of civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, and Birmingham Mayor William Bell, with music by Grammy Award-winning gospel singer CeCe Winans.
Local Birmingham minister Steve Green, the official pastoral representative for the city's 50th anniversary civil rights commemoration, said in a TBN release that Mayor Bell issued an official proclamation asking Birmingham's churches to join in the program at Kelly Ingram Park. “I've spoken to a number of local pastors who are planning to bring their congregations for this special TBN broadcast,” the Rev. Green said in the release. “This will be an historical opportunity for Birmingham's Christian community to show the world the ongoing progress of civil rights in America from the unique perspective of God's Kingdom.”
On Sunday, Sept. 15, TBN (which has a local broadcast affiliate in Gadsden, Ala.) will join the city of Birmingham in sponsoring a live program from Kelly Ingram Park officially commemorating the 50th anniversary of the church bombing. Among the guests for this program, hosted by author and Christian speaker Arthur Blessitt, will be former Major League Baseball player Darryl Strawberry, pastor and evangelist Rod Parsley, Birmingham Mayor William Bell and U.S. Rep. Terri Sewell (D.-Ala.).