The Salvation Army's Juneteenth observation & prayer
Juneteenth is officially observed around the United States on June 19th, but The Salvation Army is honoring it the day before, as an official employee holiday for the first time this year!
To accompany The Salvation Army's first holiday inclusion of Juneteenth, we want to share the history for others to learn.
Juneteenth is officially celebrated on June 19th to coincide with the historic arrival of Union Army General Gordon Granger in Galveston, TX (June 19, 1865). The arrival of General Granger came two months after the Confederate surrender and end of the Civil War. He arrived in Galveston with the news of President Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation now standing as a nation-wide, resolute and binding decree. During the Civil War, Confederate states out of reach from the Union army were still allowing slavery to be practiced, despite the Proclamation. Juneteenth marks the day it was announced in Texas, that this could stand no longer.
It would take over ten years for slavery to finally see some semblance of an end. In the years to follow, many places continued to allow its resulting replacements of segregation, institutional racism and overall inequality. While Juneteenth is seen as the day to celebrate Freedom, the fight to obtain and exercise this freedom must be equally remembered in our observances. The Civil War, Thirteenth Amendment, and General Granger's arrival in Galveston are all notable achievements throughout this journey towards our country's vision of 'a more perfect union'. The journey remains, and as we celebrate these achievements for Juneteenth, we must become more emboldened to carry on the fight for equality, the fight for freedom - The Fight For Good.
This is a major part of The Salvation Army's mission and it is why Juneteenth was an important addition to our official holiday observances. This country has many hurdles to overcome, but we believe that kindness and just cause can bring all people closer together in true harmony and love. We pray that you celebrate Juneteenth with us this year and share this important holiday with your family/friends.
“Preach the gospel, to set at liberty those who are captives.” - Isaiah 64:10