Segments in this Video

Preaching the Bible (07:03)


A preacher informs slaves they should obey their masters as they would God; slaves balk at the message. A trio of African Americans overhears a song that covertly communicates a church meeting will occur that night.

Invisible Church (13:16)

Slaves meet covertly to worship in a Christian ceremony that incorporates African beliefs. The ensemble sings "I Know the Lord Has Laid His Hands on Me," "Didn't My Lord Deliver Daniel," "Lord I Want to Be a Christian," and "Walk Over God's Heaven."

Philadelphia, 1787 (04:45)

Richard Allen and Absalom Jones build St. George's and form the African Methodist Episcopal Church. Hymns and spirituals gain popularity after Allen publishes a hymnal. The ensemble sings "Amazing Grace" and "Somebody's Calling My Name."

Credits: Thank God: An African-American Docu-Opera — Part 2 (01:04)

Credits: Thank God: An African-American Docu-Opera — Part 2

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Thank God: An African-American Docu-Opera — Part 2

Part of the Series : Thank God: An African-American Docu-Opera
3-Year Streaming Price: $49.95



There is no music more beautiful, more compelling, more American than Black Sacred Music. It is the soul of the Black Church and the Black Church is the foundation of the Black Community. This program from Tony Brown's Journal is the second part in the Thank God four-part series that started out as a documentary on the African oral tradition which manifested on these shores largely as America's indigenous music. As the scenes unfolded and research progressed, there was more and more music, presenting a picture of how the African slaves learned to sing the Lord's song in a strange land.

Length: 28 minutes

Item#: FMK167332

Copyright date: ©1985

Closed Captioned

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