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Celebrating the Life & Work of Blessed Absalom Jones

March 3 @ 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Absalom Jones 2019 Event Pic-c

Join us in a community-wide service celebrating the life and work of the Blessed Absalom Jones, trail-blazing African-American priest.

The Rev. Absalom Jones, was an early 19th century pastor who is known as the first ordained African American priest of The Episcopal Church. Jones was born a slave in Delaware and went on to help found St. Thomas African Episcopal Church in Philadelphia, Penn. It was the first black Episcopal parish in the U.S.

PREACHING: The Rev. Phoebe A. Roaf, bishop elect of the Diocese of West Tennessee, will preach. Roaf, a fourth generation Episcopalian, is the first African-American woman to be ordained as an Episcopal priest in the Diocese of Louisiana. She is the first African-American to be ordained bishop in Tennessee.

Roaf earned a law degree from the University of Arksansas, Little Rock, and clerked two years in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. She also worked in commercial real estate before pursuing a call to serve the Episcopal Church as clergy. She completed her bachelor’s degree at Harvard University, earned an MPA at Princeton University, and attended Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria. She is vice chair of the board of trustees at VTS.

MUSIC: The featured musician at the service is Brian Clay, creator and host of Jazzspirations, an innovative radio show & internet radio station featuring Inspirational Jazz or Gospel Jazz. Clay is an extremely talented jazz pianist, songwriter, recording artist and producer with multiple solo projects to his credit. Brian is a sought after session player and studio musician and live player in the vibrant Atlanta contemporary jazz scene as well as across the country.

Childcare will be available and there will be a reception after the service.

SATURDAY MORNING GATHERING WITH BISHOP ELECT ROAF: A reception for will be held for Bishop-elect Roaf 10 am to noon on Saturday, March 2,  in the Middle School Dining Hall at the Episcopal School of Knoxville, 950 Episcopal School Way, Knoxville, TN 37932 (just up the drive from the Diocesan House). You are welcome to come and meet the Rev. Phoebe Roaf!

The events are sponsored by the East Tennessee Union of Black Episcopalians (UBE).

Please contact Michael Moore, 865-360-6706, for more information.


March 3
5:00 pm - 7:00 pm


Good Samaritan, Knoxville
425 North Cedar Bluff Road
Knoxville, TN 37923 United States
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(865) 693-9591