Unification News for August 1999

Parents’ Day in Detroit

Edward Taub
Grosse Point, MI

On Saturday evening, July 24, at Steve’s Soul Food Restaurant in Detroit, the True Family Values Ministry sponsored their first Parents’ Day Awards Banquet to honor the Detroit area "Parents of the Year." About 100 guests attended the event and vigorously applauded the winners, Gerald and Dawn Jackson from Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Detroit, who received a plaque and a $200 cash prize.

In accepting the prize, Mrs. Jackson stated, "When I first received the telephone call from Mr. Taub about the nomination, I thought it was a scam, and that someone was going to ask me for money. But when I heard my pastor’s name mentioned, I knew it was legitimate, and I felt honored to have been nominated by my church. Now that we are the grand prize winners, I am very thankful to the organizers, and I promise to spread the word about the importance of the two-parent family and about the significance of this new holiday, Parents’ Day."

Altogether, eleven couples were nominated by various churches, businesses and organizations, and each received a framed certificate of appreciation from the True Family Values Ministry. Each couple (or family) was introduced by their sponsor, who explained why they were chosen for this recognition. Then each couple reciprocated with a few words of thanks.

Some of the comments were quite touching. In speaking of his nominees, Elder Thomas Haralson of Harvest Community Church said, "Whenever I need something done at church, I always ask the Eberhardts. They never complain about the additional responsibility, and they are truly grateful to serve God in any way they can. Every church should have a couple like the Eberhardts."

One 16-year-old son shared about his parents: "When I was younger I would get mad at my parents for forcing me to practice my violin. They would nag me every day, and I could never evade this particular duty. Now that I am an accomplished performer, I understand why they did what they did, and I can honestly tell my parents that I could never have done it without them."

The grand-prize winners, the Jacksons, had their own tale of love and faith. "We lost our second child when she was two years old. She died in her sleep from unknown causes. We were crushed by the experience, but we never lost our faith in God. We never became resentful toward Him but just accepted it as His will. Actually, our faith became stronger from this experience, and we started counseling others who had similar losses. Then, several years later, God gave us another child. Needless to say, we were very grateful. Receiving this award is like a final confirmation that God is, indeed, good."

One of the last-minute surprises for the organizers was a call from Wayne County Commissioner Jewel Ware, who asked if there was still time to send in a nomination. Then she added, "Can I give a proclamation at the event, too?" And she did just that!

Providing entertainment at the event were the True Family Values Japanese Sisters Choir, who performed two beautiful songs in Japanese, and Rev. Emanuel Taylor of POEM Ministries, who reached the impossibly high notes of "You’ll Never Walk Alone" with professional ease.

One of the highlights of the evening was the ceremonial Blessing of two distinct groups of participants: the married couples and the young people ages 12-22. Each was asked, respectively, to pledge sexual purity before marriage and fidelity within marriage. The married couples were also asked to recite vows never to divorce or separate. A toast to seal the vows was then offered with sparkling grape juice served in champagne glasses.

Serving on the selection committee to choose the "Parents of the Year" were the three board members of the True Family Values Ministry: Charles Cherutich, David Kasbow and Edward Taub. Each played a major role in making the event such an extraordinary success.

Edward Taub also served as event chairperson and master of ceremonies. In explaining the mission of True Family Values, he said: "Even though 80% of children born in Detroit are being raised in single parent homes, we will not accept this as the norm. Someone has to proclaim boldly that it is the two-parent family which is God’s ideal. We will accept nothing less for our city."

Closing out the event was guest speaker Rev. Ernest Hatcher of New Kingdom Missionary Baptist Church, who emphasized that the man is the head of the household as Christ is the head of the church. He encouraged all participants that, if possible, one of the parents should be home at all times to take care of the children. "That is a full-time job, too, and more important than the extra earned income."

The next event planned for the True Family Values Ministry in Detroit is a prayer breakfast on Aug. 28 where the Free Teens slide presentation will be introduced. "This will be the official kick-off of our youth ministry," said Edward Taub. "Eventually we want to offer this presentation to all Detroit area churches and youth groups."

Edward Taub is the Detroit Family Church co-pastor, American Constitution Committee’s Michigan state coordinator and a public-school science teacher.

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