Rev. Dr. Shane Scott, pastor of Macedonia Baptist Church in Watts. (File photo)

To commemorate 115 years of dedicated service and commitment to justice in the Watts Community and surrounding areas, Macedonia Baptist Church will host the Macedonia Legacy Luncheon on Saturday, October 7, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., at City Club LA.

The event will highlight the church’s enduring legacy and honor leaders who have made a significant impact in the community. Also, the program will include presentations on the church’s rich history, musical performances, comedy, food, and dancing.

“Though Macedonia Baptist Church boasts a rich history, we are far from being stuck in the past. We may be old, but we are incredibly relevant, deeply relational, and a vibrant beacon of hope for our community. The Macedonia Legacy Luncheon is a testament to us honoring our traditions while actively shaping a brighter future for all those we serve,” said Dr. Shane B. Scott, senior pastor.

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The Macedonia Legacy Luncheon will feature an impressive lineup of honorees, including Congresswoman Maxine Waters, who will be present at the event and is considered by many to be one of the most powerful women in American politics today.

Congresswoman Maxine Waters will be honored at the Legacy Luncheon. (File photo)

Other honorees include Jennifer Baird, director of Patient Care Services Education and Research at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles; Olivette Evans-Hester, choir director and former music educator; Gloria Morones, dedicated community organizer; Byron J. Smith, professor of Music at Los Angeles Harbor College, and organist and choir director at Grant AME Church in Los Angeles; Leandro Tyberg, president and co-founder of Primestor Development, Inc.; and Mary S. Eston, Center for Alzheimer’s Research and Care.

The Macedonia Legacy Luncheon will also feature guest speaker, Rev. Dr. W. Franklyn Richardson, chair of Virginia Union University’s Board and Pastor of Grace Baptist Church in Mt. Vernon, New York.

The Macedonia congregation is well-known for embracing and empowering the Watts community by offering various programs and services. For example, to combat Watts’ status as a food desert, Macedonia Baptist Church hosts weekly food drives and distributes hot meals twice a week.

“Our consistent efforts have been instrumental in alleviating food insecurity in this underserved area, making a profound impact on the lives of our residents,” explained Scott.

Rev. Dr. Shane B. Scott is a strong advocate for the Watts community. (Courtesy photo)

Macedonia Baptist Church’s enduring commitment to the Watts community is further exemplified through its establishment of the Macedonia Community Development Corporation (MCDC). Founded in 2015, the organization has been instrumental in addressing the deep-seated challenges faced by the underserved Black and Brown community of Watts, including social, political, and economic injustices, food insecurities, violence, drug addiction, and low literacy rates.

In line with this mission, the corporation also established the Watts Entrepreneur Business Accelerator (WEBA) program to offer technical assistance and capital access to entrepreneurs, local businesses, and firms employing Watts residents.

The MCDC’s other successes include:

  • Securing a revolving $800,000 microloan fund in perpetuity from the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles (HACLA)
  • Receiving a $1 Million grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to provide technical assistance to entrepreneurs in South Los Angeles
  • Providing critical sustenance to 300 food-insecure community members each week, recognizing that filling this gap is essential to fostering entrepreneurship, workforce development, and job creation
  • Working to renovate and convert the House of Hope building in Watts into a Kitchen incubator
  • Hosting health and wellness fairs to secure Covid and Flu vaccinations for local residents
Macedonia Baptist Church hosts weekly food drives and distributes hot meals twice a week.  (Courtesy photo)

Addressing disparities in multiple myeloma, which disproportionately affects the Black community, with African Americans comprising 20% of patients despite being 14% of the population

“MCDC bridges the divide between the spiritual and justice realms, exemplifying our congregation’s commitment to uplifting and transforming the Watts community,” Dr. Scott said.

“After 115 years of the church’s inception, we are excited to re-introduce ourselves as an even stronger ally to the community and reinforce our mission and vision.”