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March 6 - Houston, Texas


STILL STANDING AND CRUSADING

The ministerial charisma and evangelical fire that have characterized his preaching for the past 55 years were still evident as Father Sun Myung Moon addressed the gathering at Pleasant Grove Missionary Baptist Church on Tuesday, March 6, 2001.

The crowd of over 3,000 people was receptive and embracing as Father Moon stood in the pulpit and delivered his remarks regarding God's nature; humanity's condition resulting from the Fall of Adam and Eve; the lack of worthwhile leadership in professional clergy; and how the value of blood lineage exceeds the value of love and the value of life.

Getting to this moment, to this podium, at Pleasant Grove there had been at least one miracle in the process.

The congregation's pastor, the Reverend Charles Lewis (C. L.) Jackson, had agreed to host the event only 14 days earlier, on the night of February 20, 2001. That agreement had been obtained in response to a request by Reverend Curtis W. Walker of the Houston Family Federation for World Peace and Unification and the American Clergy Leadership Conference (ACLC). The request occurred at an evening ceremony held in honor of Rev. Jackson's wife, Mrs. Betty Jackson, First Lady of Pleasant Grove M. B. C. as he and Rev. Walker stood side by side.

The Houston Family Federation community had scrambled to secure a megachurch for more than three weeks. A 600-seat sanctuary, the Depnest Evangelistic Baptist Church, had been obtained, and its head, Pastor Ernest Williams, had said, "Reverend Moon is more than welcome to hold his event here. My church is his church."

Despite this humble and precious offer, a larger venue was needed and was also sought. Rev. Curtis' wife, Lori, in a dream, had already seen Pastor C. L. Jackson's sanctuary as the place God had chosen for the "We Will Stand" engagement. That inspiration led to the "chance" audience with Reverend C.L. Jackson. His acceptance and permission came with no hesitation whatsoever.

During the ensuing two weeks, C. L. Jackson continuously promoted "We Will Stand" to the congregants of Pleasant Grove, as well as to radio listeners throughout the Houston metroplex. He stood firmly by his decision to be the host, and he defended Father Moon's right to believe and to teach whatever the Lord Jesus revealed to him to believe and to teach. Pastor Jackson's openness and his unwavering confidence were magnificent to behold

C. L. Jackson and his 5000-seat, domed sanctuary are known all over Texas, throughout the United States, and around the world.

Outbursts of "Hallelujah!" and "Praise God!" reached the ceiling as the atmosphere was
charged by energetic Gospel renditions from Ronnie McGee and the Baton Rouge
Metro Mass Choir; from Houston's own Ms. Betty Washington; from Barbara
Mitchell and Robert C. Wright of God's Properly; and from the Pleasant Grove M. B.
C. Mass Choir.

Through the Reverend Jesse Edwards and Archbishop George Stallings, God spoke mightily His crusade message, which set the tone for the keynote to come. The vitality crackled through these two spiritual giants as their words rained like brimstone to warm the hearts of all who sat beneath the sound of their voices.

The array of Texas' congregational and social leaders who put their labor and sweat behind this effort included Rev. Rufus Kyles (COGIC); Rev. Charles Keys (Baptist); Minister Robert Muhammad (Nation of Islam); Dr. Bobby E. Mills (Dept. of Health; ICC Alumnus); Rev. C. J. Phillips (St. Phillips M. B. C., Dallas); and many others.

In the end, more than 20 congregations representing 8 denominations came together to stand for faith and family.

Following Father Moon's keynote address, fire fell from Heaven as renowned Gospel artist Ms. Vickie Winans emblazoned our souls with her powerful and masterfully controlled singing voice.

This historically memorable event was concluded with an altar call by Auxiliary Bishop John Jackson. A mass of people came forward to pray that the Holy Spirit would, with authority, pour out upon America to anoint righteous leadership, to awaken our citizens, and to remove wickedness from our land.

Without a doubt, this is a new beginning, and the times of harvest and of jubilee have come upon us.

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