Francine In Retirement
Seeing Life Through Photography

WATCH NIGHT

AFRICAN-AMERICAN WATCH NIGHT SERVICE

CHURCH STAIN GLASS WINDOW

CHURCH STAIN GLASS WINDOW

Today it is New Year’s Eve, December 31, 2012.  Traditionally Christians in the African-American communities celebrate Watch Night by gathering at our churches on the last evening of the year to attend special services that begin anywhere between the hours of 7 and 10:00 p. m. and continue through midnight into the New Year.

CHURCH STAIN GLASS WINDOW

CHURCH STAIN GLASS WINDOW

These services are regarded by participants as a time to reflect upon and give thanks for the departing year and pray for the future. It is a spiritual way of celebrating a largely secular holiday.

CHURCH STAIN GLASS WINDOW

CHURCH STAIN GLASS WINDOW

The event, known as Watch Night, occupies a special place in African-American communities across America. In 1863, when President Abraham Lincoln announced that the Emancipation Proclamation would take effect Jan. 1, freeing all slaves in Confederate states, abolitionists and slaves reportedly gathered together on what was called “Freedom’s Eve” to await and watch what the new year would bring.  This act would eventually become known as Watch Night.

CHURCH STAIN GLASS WINDOW

CHURCH STAIN GLASS WINDOW

Among African-American congregations, the meaning of Watch Night has since become permanently woven into the fabric of the service, making New Year’s Eve Watch Night services as much now about remembering the end of slavery as it is upon personal reflection on the state of one’s soul, relationship with God and gratitude for another year of grace.

HEAD OF CHRIST

HEAD OF CHRIST

MAY YOU BE BLESSED WITH HEALTH, PEACE, LOVE AND HAPPINESS

IN THE YEAR 2013!

BE ENCOURAGED! BE BLESSED!

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20 Responses to “WATCH NIGHT”

  1. HAPPY NEW YEAR

    Never focus on your problems. Focus on your possibilities. The problems will pull you down. The possibilities will push you up.” — Bo Sanchez~

    Love and peace, Meggie

  2. Be brave. Be bold. Enter the New Year with confidence. Your God goes before you.

  3. What a lovely tradition! Thanks for telling me about it – and sharing your wonderful photographs. Best wishes for 2013 Francine 🙂

  4. Thanks for another lovely new bit of knowledge and happy 2013!

  5. Happy New Year Francine! 🙂

  6. Beautiful stained glass windows. Best wishes for 2013!

  7. wonderful post, thanks for telling us about watch night, i had never heard of it before …. blessings for the New Year Francine!

  8. and may all your wishes come true for you..;)

  9. appreciate the information.

    Happy new year to you 🙂

  10. Health, Love, Peace and Happiness to you too dear, Francine!
    🙂

  11. You are an excellent teacher about different cultures, Francine, and that is of interest to me. The more everyone learns about different cultures the more likely we are to accept each other without the nasty racism that is so prevalent in our society. Every small thing helps – THANK YOU!

  12. My, I haven’t been to a Watch Night in years! Wishing you a good 2013!

  13. Is this an AME church?

  14. Thank you, Francine, for teaching me about Watch Night and its origins.
    Have a very happy and blessed New Year!

  15. Hello Francine! What a lovely way to end one year and start the next.

    I have nominated you for the Food for Thought Award! I hope you’ll participate – I’d love to hear what you have to say! Here’s the link: http://wp.me/p1OXNv-yT
    Thanks!

  16. How beutiful! I had no idea!

  17. Oops, I meant beautiful 🙂

  18. I didn’t know that. Thanks for sharing!

  19. These are great visuals and information. TY!


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