Today the spiritual leaders of the recently fire ravaged Love Gospel Assembly (of the Grand Concourse) held a "Operation Restoration" fundraiser at the Concert Hall in Lehman College. Over 500 people came from all over the Bronx to rejoiced that the Love Gospel Assembly would rebuild. In addition to the singing, sermons, testimonials of how Love Gospel helped individuals, there were also the politicians.
Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. gave such a rousing speech in favor of the good work done by Love Gospel that you thought he was following in his father's footsteps. BP Diaz also pledged one thousand dollars to the restoration effort.
Next up was Councilman (and pastor) Fernando Cabrera, who really gave a sermon. Cabrera ended with saying that we stand with you Bishop Bailey, and the Love Gospel Assembly congregation. he added "The lord is about to position you to go to the next level, and you are not just a church, but a movement in the Bronx. Cabrera then also pledged one thousand dollars to the restoration effort.
Also in the audience were Deputy Bronx Borough President Greene, Assemblywoman Gibson, Assemblyman Jose Rivera, and 33rd State Senate candidate J. Gustavo Rivera. After some songs and more testimonials State Senator Pedro Espada (33rd district) with his wife Connie, and State Senate Conference Leader John Sampson arrived.
Senator Sampson said that god puts obstacles in our way, and this is only a test to see how you will rebuilds the Love Gospel Assembly. He added "one of our cornerstones is our beliefs in god, especially in these tough times". "Keep the faith".
Senator Espada then said that we don't believe in separation of church, and that god is everywhere. Senators Espada and Sampson then presented Bishop Bailey with a check for one hundred thousand dollars for Operation Restoration. After thanking both senators Bishop Bailey showed the sketch of a new 7 story building to replace the old burned out one.
Before Senator Espada left I asked him if he would appear on the Bronxtalk debate set up by Gary Axelbank, and Senator Espada told me that he saw no reason why he would not be there for the TV debate, but that he would have to talk to his chief of staff first about the debate.
I also asked Espada's opponent to comment on the check that Senator Espada gave to Operation Restoration, and Mr. Gustavo Rivera commented that he hopes the check is for real, because the Love Gospel Assembly needs all the help it can get in its rebuilding effort.