Dr. Mamie Montague
Sister Evelyn Sellers
The health ministry at Nineteenth Street enthusiastically embraces the key role that churches can play in health promotion and disease prevention in the faith-based and wider community. The church is an ideal setting to establish preventive health care programs because of its capability to provide services focused on the functional needs of people.
Through the visionary leadership of Pastor Derrick Harkins, the health ministry of The Nineteenth Baptist church has over the past few years, demonstrated a level of support, compassion, and caring that have made and will continue to make programmatic efforts effective when mobilizing people/groups to accept change;- change that makes a difference in protecting their health and the quality of their lives. We have learned through our health education programs, sponsored by the health ministry and community partners, that the church may also be an ideal venue for connecting health services and education to a broader scope of health research and policy concerns.
This ministry primarily addresses issues of health that are problematic in Americans in general and African Americans in particular. Health practices such as HIV/AIDS screening and testing as a responsible behavior, blood pressure, diabetes, prostate and colon cancers, stroke and Alzheimer’s screening and life-style education can be easily done in any church setting;-remembering that African Americans have traditionally trusted and valued the power and role of the Black Church for information and guidance in their lives. We pray that nurturing and protecting this trust will open the doors to “unlimited”and powerful expansion of Church Health Ministry.