Last night, Philadelphians Organized to Witness, Empower and Rebuild (POWER) hosted its founding Convention in South Philadelphia. About 3,000 people turned out at Tindley Temple United Methodist Church on Broad Street.
Congregants and religious leaders from across Philadelphia sang hymns and gave testimonies about poverty and unemployment. Reverend Ernie Flores of the Second Baptist church of Germantown offered a prayer for social change.
“There are people who are capable of working and willing to be working who have no jobs,” said Flores. “There are children who would learn and can learn but nobody’s given them the opportunity to learn. There are so many things in our city Lord, were just looking up to you and saying, if ever we needed you Lord, Lord it’s now.”
POWER includes about 40 congregations from various faiths. The religious groups called on Philadelphia leaders to make sure federal contracts, such as the upcoming airport expansion, create good-paying jobs for city residents. Mayor Nutter and Police Commissioner Ramsey attended. Councilman Bill Green promised to introduce legislation requiring public works projects to hire local residents.