Washington DC Jamaicans to Mark 58th Independence Anniversary with All-Virtual Service of Thanksgiving

Author  Derrick Scott

Jamaicans in the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia (DMV) comprising the Washington DC metropolitan area will celebrate the 58th anniversary of Independence of their native Jamaica with a historic, entirely livestreamed Thanksgiving service this year, on Sunday, August 2, 2020 beginning at 11:00 a.m.

BarryblackChaplain of the United States Senate, US Navy Rear Admiral Barry C. Black (Ret.)The church service is being organized by the Embassy of Jamaica.  This will be the first time the special event – which traditionally brings together Jamaicans from the DMV area and beyond, to mark the Jamaican independence milestone – is going virtual. This change is in keeping with restrictions on in-person gatherings stemming from the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic.

Her Excellency Audrey P. Marks, Jamaica’s Ambassador to the United States, describes this year’s theme, “Resilient and Strong: Let’s celebrate Jamaica 58,” for the observance of independence as therefore quite opportune. 

“Birthed out of centuries of struggle, our nation has long been accustomed to adversity. The ongoing challenges are therefore no match for the strength and strong resolve of the Jamaican people.  I am confident that we will not only survive this ordeal, but we will also thrive, despite the enormous obstacles we confront.”

The Washington, D.C., Service of Thanksgiving will feature pre-recorded Independence messages from Governor General Sir Patrick Allen and Prime Minister the Most Honourable Andrew Holness.  Ambassador Marks will give the welcome address.

The featured sermon will be delivered by Chaplain of the United States Senate, Rear Admiral Barry (Ret.), with Dr. Bertram Melbourne, Biblical Language Literature Professor of Howard University School of Divinity, serving as moderator for the service.

Musical selections will be rendered by Performing Artistes Under the Lord (PAUL), Chevelle Franklyn, and a group of professional drummers.