Saturday, December 27, 2014

Minister Evans and Olivia are featured in 55Plus Magazine!

55Plus Magazine is a magazine published in Rochester that highlights the accomplishments of older Rochesterians.  They were very gracious to grant an interview with Minister Lawrance Lee Evans. Shout out to writer Ernst Lamothe Jr. for the beautiful article. Needless to say, Olivia's parents are ecstatic that their cute daughter is posing with "Poppa." You can read "Paying Homage" on  Issuu, or if you live in Rochester, pick up a free copy of 55Plus at Wegmans.

Also, we began our seven day Kwanzaa celebration on December 26 with the Umoja Concert featuring our fave duo, the father and daughter duo of Johnny and SoSo Brown. We listened to a passage from one of our important books The Miseducation  of the Negro, and had a history lesson on the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  The complete schedule for the remainder of the week is listed in the November 27 post below.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

First Fruits and Kwanzaa season starts next week!

For the fourth consecutive year, First Community Interfaith Institute Inc. is participating in the online fundraising vehicle known as "ROCTHEDAY," where people from everywhere can donate securely to the Rochester based nonprofit(s) of their choice. This year "ROCTHEDAY" falls a little earlier than usual, on December 2. You have from midnight December 2 to 11:59 pm December 2 to use your credit or debit card to make a tax deductible donation to our educational programs here at the Institute. If you have benefited from the Institute's services in the past, we are hoping that this will be a good and easy way to give back. The direct link to our donation page is

First Fruits begins on Monday December 1. We at the Institute celebrate First Fruits from December 1 to December 25. From December 26 to January 1 we switch gears to celebrate Kwanzaa as popularized by Dr. Maulana Karenga.

Here are the primary events for this year's First Fruits/Kwanzaa season:

  •  December 1 is the Kwanzaa Appreciation Program, 5:30 pm at 219 Hamilton Street. This is the introductory event that explains what Kwanzaa and First Fruits is all about. We conclude with the children blowing the seven candles.
  • December 15 is African Mothers Day, 6 pm, School #33, 500 Webster Avenue. This is when all girls and women receive flowers from the men and boys. We also have dinner and a brief program coordinated by longtime Institute supporter Ester Gliwinski.
  • December 26 is Umoja (unity), 6 pm, 219 Hamilton Street
  • December 27 is Kujichagulia (self-determination), 6 pm, 219 Hamilton Street
  • December 28 is Ujima (collective work and responsibility), 4pm, 219 Hamilton Street (Student Doology Hour, the weekly church service)
  • December 29 is Ujamaa (cooperative economics), 6 pm, 219 Hamilton Street
  • December 30 is Nia (purpose), 6 pm, 219 Hamilton Street
  • December 31 is Kuumba (creativity), 6 pm, 219 Hamilton Street
  • January 1, 2015 is Imani (faith), 6 pm, St John's Home, 150 Highland Avenue. This is the Karamu, or Kwanzaa feast, where we exchange gifts, the children receive books, and we bring a dish to pass (no pork). We conclude the 32 day Kwanzaa season with the chant "HARAMBEE!"

Hope to see you at our First Fruits/Kwanzaa events!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Celebrate Minister Lawrance Lee Evans' birthday and the 44th anniversary of First Community Interfaith Institute

On November 2, 2014, we invite you to join us for our joint celebration of founder Minister Lawrance Lee Evans Sr.'s birthday and the anniversary of the renowned First Community Interfaith Institute Inc. The celebration starts at 4 pm. In lieu of actual gifts, please make a donation to First Community Interfaith Institute Inc. Your donation on November 2 goes towards our current four month Kwanzaa Appeal fundraiser.

In addition, you will get an opportunity to enjoy some great blues and gospel music courtesy of Brother Johnny Brown.

See you on November 2 at 4 pm, 219 Hamilton Street.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Ma Akilah's Cultural Extravaganza is on Sept. 21

Our beloved Queen Mother, Sister Akilah Ife Evans (1946-2012) would be celebrating her 68th birthday on September 19. You are invited to hear songs and libations, among other things, in her honor at the 3rd Annual Ma Akilah Cultural Extravaganza on Sunday, Sept. 21 at 4 pm, at the Institute headquarters, 219 Hamilton Street. Brother Johnny Brown and his daughter Ty'Johnna "So-So" Brown will be performing in concert during the Cultural Extravaganza.
Cultural legends Minister Lawrance Lee Evans and his wife, Minister Akilah

Below is a video from the successful Uhuru Week finale on August 23, 2014:

Everyone is invited to attend the Cultural Extravaganza. It is a family friendly event.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Uhuru Week Schedule

We are gearing up for our annual Uhuru Week in honor of the Honorable Marcus Garvey. It begins on Garvey's 127th birthday (August 17) and concludes on April 23. All events are at 219-221 Hamilton Street.

SUNDAY, AUG 17: STUDENT DOOLOGY HOUR, 4 PM (weekly worship service, dinner served)
MONDAY, AUG 18: POLITICAL EDUCATION TASK FORCE, 6:30 PM, Presentations of African ethnic groups (nations) by Brother Zeb (Akan nation), Brother Brian Griffin (Zulu nation) and Brother Leo White (Ibo nation)
WEDNESDAY, AUG 20: READING OF THE MISEDUCATION OF THE NEGRO, 5:30 PM, Presentation of the Congo and Sylvester and Stacey Johnson Memorial by Sister Shiminege
FRIDAY, AUG 22: MINISTRY SCHOOL OF DOOLOGY, 6 PM (weekly class with Minister Evans' adult students, open to the public this week only, dinner served)
SATURDAY, AUG 23, BENEFIT HONORING MINISTER LAWRANCE LEE EVANS, 7 PM, barbecue, presentations of the Asante (Ashanti) nation (by Sister Uwinana) and the Jamaican Maroons (Sister Nia); Event link is:

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Summary of the 35th FCII Festival

The Rochester chapter of First Community Interfaith Institute Inc. arrived at the Kanisa House, 142 Cleveland Street, for the opening of the festival to sit and take in the beautiful garden at the back of the building (10 July 2014)
Cilantro, anyone? The Ohio group has planted tomatoes, turnips, peppers, and so much more.
The Morning Journal newspaper based in Lorain/Elyria wrote an excellent article about Minister Lawrance Lee Evans. Please click on the above link.
Minister Evans was the keynote speaker at the Martha Jordan Dinner, 12 July 2014

Minister Lawrance Lee Evans spoke at the Kanisa House, 13 July 2014
 Thank you, Minister Gerald J. Evans for putting together another outstanding festival!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

The 35th Annual FCII Festival is two weeks away!

The theme for this year's FCII festival in Elyria, Ohio is "Diversity for All People/" The four day schedule of events (July 10-13) has two venues: Lorain County Community Collevige (  and the Ohio chapter headquarters, the Kanisa House,142 Cleveland Street.
RSVP by calling (440)366-3244.

Below is a summary of the schedule so far:

Thursday July 10: 3-8 PM, Kanisa House-- arts and crafts, games, drumming circle
Friday July 11: 9 AM to 8 PM at LCCC College Center, 1005 N. Abbe Road--workshops, lunch, day concludes with the Elizabeth Coleman Awards Dinner (6-8 pm)
Saturday July 12: 9 AM-12 PM, LCCC Ewing Center--recreational activities, followed by lunch, day concludes with the Martha Jordan Dinner (6-8 PM) featuring the Rochester chapter and Minister Lawrance Lee Evans Sr., the National Minister of First Community Interfaith Institute Inc.
Sunday July 13: 10 AM-2 PM. Kanisa House--Church service, lunch and other activities 

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Father's Day at First Community Interfaith Institute Inc.

On Sunday, June 15, Minister Lawrance Lee Evans Sr. will give a special presentation titled "Fathers Day--What is Your Legacy?" The program is geared to fathers,  but everyone, especially families, are welcome to attend. "Fathers Day--What is Your Legacy?" begins at 4 pm at 219 Hamilton Street. There will be an African Fashion Show and poetry selections before Minister Lawrance Evans speaks. Dinner will be served.
Please join us! This event is part of our fundraising effort for our trip to the FCII Festival in July.

Minister Lawrance Evans wears his Malcolm X dashiki, May 2014

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Join us for the Malcolm X Week of events (from May 18 to May 24)

Schedule of activities for 43rd annual Malcolm X Celebration

In honor of the late Malcolm X's 89th birthday, First Community Interfaith Institute Inc. invites the public to a week long celebration of activities, all of which take place at 219 Hamilton Street. 

Sunday, May 18 (4 pm) is a special Student Doology Hour. We will acknowledge the contributions of Rochester activist and educator Brother Waddell Ansari (Johnson), who was a personal friend of Malcolm X and a strong supporter of First Community Interfaith Institute Inc.The title of the program is 'The Miseducated and Should Have Known: Waddell Nazeer Ansari Muhammad and Malcolm X."

Monday, May 19(6:30 pm) the Political Education Task Force will host a discussion on "Discipline Corrects Miseducation." Sponsored by the Johnny Brown Defense Committee.

Tuesday May 20 (4-6 om): Open House and Tutoring 

Wednesday May 21 (5:30 pm): Adult reading class will read books/speeches by Malcolm X and the classic Miseducation of the Negro.

Thursday May 22:  by appointment only, private consultation/meeting with Minister Evans

Friday May 23: (6:30 pm): The Ministry School of Doology presents "Time and Organizing"

Saturday May 24: (1-3 pm) Bottle campaign--help out with organizing and counting of NYS bottles and cans. Bottle campaign fundraiser supports the Charles Riley Tutorial Program

Thursday, April 3, 2014

"The Meaning of Resurrection" on April 20

The public is invited to the annual Resurrection service on Sunday, April 20, 2014 ( 4 : 00
pm) at First Community Interfaith Institute Inc., 219 Hamilton Street, Rochester NY,
14620 . The annual rhetorical presentation is "The Meaning of Resurrection." The
rhetorician will be the National Minister of First Community Interfaith Institute Inc.,
Minister Lawrance Lee Evans Sr. Minister Lawrance Lee Evans Sr. is the founder of First
Community Interfaith Institute Inc., the major financial supporter of the Charles Riley
Tutorial Program and the Developer of a discipline called DOOLOGY.

Minister Lawrance Lee Evans will demonstrate how different meanings of Christ's death
and resurrection can be amicably presented without the often opinionated controversies
and theologies. Minister Evans will pronounce how the subject of resurrection can serve
as a vehicle of amour propre (self-esteem).

"The Meaning of Resurrection" has special significance for the city of Rochester, where
too often the city is described (by too many) as a place of poverty, homelessness,
academic underachievement and barren of skills. "Can any good thing come out of
Rochester (Nazareth)?" Minister Lawrance Lee Evans Sr., on April 20, 2014 (4 pm) will
answer the question: "Can we germinate enfranchisement where there are
disenfranchisement by negative prognoses by those who benefit from the exploitation of
the downtrodden? How can the 'good news' emerge from Nazareth (Rochester)??"

First Community Interfaith Institute Inc. is a spiritual and cultural organization, plus a
teaching church. The Institute is known for its after school programs, mentorship and
cultural programs. First Community Interfaith Institute Inc. Is located in the South
Note: dinner will be served during the program. The "Meaning of Resurrection" is part of our extended Kwanzaa Appeal fundraiser, which concludes on April 30.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Women's History Month observation at the Institute

For Women's History Month, First Community Interfaith Institute Inc. will be paying homage to our late trustee  Sister Siti Akanke (1932-2005).

We will be having a week-long celebration from March 9-15, at 219 Hamilton Street, with every activity starting at 4 pm each day of the week. The theme for this year's Women History Month celebration is "True Blessings: Real Education and True Relationships." Minister Lawrance Lee Evans Sr. will teach at the kickoff event, March 9, 2014, 4 pm on "A Doology Vision." On March 10, on Sister Siti's birthday, we will have a get together at 6 pm at 219 Hamilton Street.

Please support our Women's History Month celebration.

The Institute now has a Brooklyn, New York chapter. The address is 4809 Snyder Avenue Suite 1F, Brooklyn NY 11203. Contact phone number is 347.236.3195.

Friday, January 31, 2014

Black History weekend of events in Rochester

On Friday, February 14 at 6:30 pm, the young and adult students will be hosting "Students Speak," at 219 Hamilton Street. The young students, all part of the Charles Riley Tutorial Program and Sophomore Ministry School of Doology, will recite facts about various heroes and sheroes for "Reciprocity." The adult students, all part of the Ministry School of Doology, will expand on their previous oral presentations on various assigned African diaspora tribes or nations such as Akan, Asante, Zulu, and the Jamaican Maroons.

On Sunday, February 16, at 4 pm, Minister Lawrance Lee Evans will give his annual Supporters Day lecture, "Doology, The South Wedge, Education and Me in the South Wedge." Supporters Day is the annual birthday tribute to one of Minister Evans' best students  and supporters, Charles Riley (1958-1997), whose birthday is February 17.

Both events take place at 219 Hamilton Street. The Kwanzaa Appeal fundraiser ends on February 16.
We hope to see you at one or both programs.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Martin Luther King Jr Commemorative Lecture

 On Sunday January 19 at 4 pm, 219 Hamilton Street, Minister Lawrance Lee Evans Sr., will speak on "Examining King  From a Perspective of the Discipline of Doology." Our annual King event is part of the Kwanzaa Appeal fundraiser that concludes next month. All are invited.

Sunday's program is the high point of the week long schedule of King events at the Institute, which begins on the actual birthday of Dr. King (15 January), with a reading class at 5:30 pm at 219 Hamilton Street. On Monday (20 January), the federal holiday for Dr.King, our Charles Riley Tutorial Program will do presentations on Black History at 6:30 pm at 219 Hamilton Street for Minister Evans' political education class.

Below are some pictures from our recent First Fruits/Kwanzaa events.

Minister Evans, 01 December 2013, at the Kwanzaa Appreciation Program

Minister Evans, 28 December, at the Ujima celebration