The Love That Forgives

On Sunday, September 15, 1963 at 10:22 am, a horrific blast from a bomb planted at 16th Street Baptist Church killed four little girls and injured many others.   Tragically, this blast also interrupted the Sunday School lesson and sermon scheduled for that day centered around the theme, “A Love that Forgives”.   Below is a note we received and resources we were invited to share.   It is our hope that all people of faith will find these resources valuable and useful to your work, ministry and service to people demonstrating that love and reconciliation will not be interrupted.

Carolyn Foster

GBM Faith in Community Coordinator

Dear Church Leaders,

As we continue to look at where we are as a nation, 50 years after 1963, we thought it appropriate that we look back at the Sunday School Lesson that was taught on September 15, 1963, prior to the bombing of Sixteenth Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama that killed four girls and injured many others.  We have included a copy of the original lesson outline, The Love That Forgives, and the supporting resources.  We have also included some additional resources that you might find helpful as you teach this lesson.

Based on our research, we know that Rev. John Cross, pastor of Sixteenth Baptist Church, had planned to continue the Sunday School lesson with a sermon entitled “A Love That Forgives.”  We have included resources designed to support both the Sunday School lesson and the planned sermon.

I am writing to ask for your help in disseminating the Sunday School lesson and the other resources to not only your local church, but to other churches, pastors, lay leaders, teachers, and to as many in the faith community as possible.  Lets start a ripple effect that moves around the world.

I hope that you will join us in our efforts to get this message of hope out to as many people as possible.  The message of 1963 is so pertinent that it requires all of us to take another look at this message of love, forgiveness, and reconciliation.  Please click on the link below to access the resources.

In His Service,

Martha Bouyer

Discipleship Director, Greater Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church