Nine Years of Healing, Hope and Resilience


Today marks the nine-year anniversary of the tragic event at Mother Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina. On the evening of June 17, 2015, during a peaceful Bible study, nine members of the church were senselessly murdered in an act of hatred and racism. This horrific event not only shocked the nation but also highlighted the ongoing struggle against racial violence and intolerance.

As we remember the lives lost – Rev. Clementa Pinckney, Cynthia Hurd, Susie Jackson, Ethel Lance, Rev. DePayne Middleton-Doctor, Tywanza Sanders, Rev. Daniel Simmons, Rev. Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, and Myra Thompson – we also celebrate their legacy of faith, love, and resilience. These individuals were pillars of the community, dedicated to service, education, and faith.

In the face of unimaginable sorrow, the families of the Emanuel Nine and survivors showed extraordinary strength and forgiveness. Their message of love and unity inspired a movement towards healing and reconciliation. As survivor Polly Sheppard expressed, “Together, we can fight for change. Together, we can heal. Together, we can love.”

The Mother Emanuel Memorial Foundation continues to honor their memory by promoting a vision of a world free from racism and hate and a sacred space for meaningful dialogue. This anniversary is a time for us to reflect on the progress we have made and the work that still lies ahead. It reminds us that while the scars of the past remain, our commitment to a brighter future must never waver.

We invite you to join us at Mother Emanuel AME today, June 17, 2024, at 12:00 p.m. for a meaningful 39-minute Bible Study session led by Rev. Eric Manning. This session will delve into the profound significance of remembering, and the resilient spirit of the Emanuel Nine, the survivors, and the congregation of Mother Emanuel AME Church.

With hope and determination,

Mother Emanuel Memorial Foundation