Pastor Brenda Stevenson sat in the wheelchair behind the altar and gave her congregation a knowing look. Sunday was a day to honor fathers, she told them, even if their fathers haven’t always behaved honorably.
“You have some fathers who have fallen through the cracks, and you have some that are the strength of their families,” Stevenson said. “But the Bible just says ‘honor thy father.’ ”
“It doesn’t say harp on what he did or didn’t do,” she later added. “Whether he raised you or not or whether he was there for you. Sometimes we just have to allow ourselves to forgive and move forward.”
More than 50 people attended the Father’s Day service at Stevenson’s northwest Charlotte church, New Outreach Christian Center, just off Rozzelle’s Ferry Road.
The church gave attendees a free meal and groceries to take home. Several choirs and singing groups also serenaded the fathers.
Ron Tyree, 63, who has four children ranging in age from 19 to 46, said the service reminded him of how attentive he needed to be as a father. “(Fathers) need to remember that they need to take time to pay more attention to their children and to listen to their children,” Tyree said. “But if that’s the case, every day should be Father’s Day.”