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Farrakhan: Detroiters need faith and each other

Minister Louis Farrakhan

Detroit City Councilwoman JoAnn Watson

Minister Louis Farrakhan

Rev. Wendell Anthony

Minister Louis Farrakhan

Minister Louis Farrakhan

PHOTOS BY RALPH JONES

By F. Carlton Peeples

Special to the Michigan Citizen

DETROIT – Nation of Islam leader Minister Louis Farrakhan visited Detroit’s Fellowship Chapel Banquet and Conference Center to address some 3,500 guests May 17. The controversial religious leader’s comments, expected to focus on the sociopolitical and economic concerns of Detroit, a city the Nation of Islam calls home, addressed a different elephant in the room.

Farrakhan’s message of Christ-likeness called out the city’s religious leaders challenging them to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ, while cautioning that, “When we stand up for what’s right, we leave the crowd and the crowd leaves us.”

Minister Farrakhan’s myriad views touched on same sex marriage, moral impunities and images in media, drug use and ministers preaching (or lack of) the Gospel. “Satan has devoured much of humanity … If you want the favor of God, you’ll never get the favor of the world.”

His message of morality was not the politically-charged, racially stark focus that he is known for. Neither was it the message that many followers and lay Detroiters had come expecting. He loosely paired hot button issues with a heavily spiritual message.

“I thought he’d (focus on) Detroit and how it’s falling apart, not (so much) about Jesus,” states Tanesha Johnson, 38, of Detroit.

His preaching — however brief — spoke toward Detroit’s current state. The city’s economic crisis largely being attributed to African Americans’ unwillingness to “wake up” and invest in the community they call home.

Citing that the city’s African American majority spent $19 billion last year, Farrakhan says that African Americans are divided and outsiders are working to absorb the city, displacing its current communities. Farrakhan said he wants to help Detroit and encouraged residents to buy property.

“Vultures are flying over Detroit. They’re (investors and non-stakeholders) coming in with money buying up downtown, while the Black majority population are not buying anything.” Farrakhan went on to address the city’s emergency manager crisis: “If we knew Jesus, really knew Him, there would be no need for us to argue over who’s managing the city,” Farrakhan told the crowd. “No, we manage it — in His name.”

Johnson said she does feel that Farrakhan’s message is “definitely” what Detroiters need.  Farrakhan is featured on the cover of this week’s The Final Call, a newspaper he founded. The headline reads Urban Revival: Farrakhan … (Delivers) Guidance for Resurrecting the Motor City and Rebuilding the Black Community.

 

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