Putting his money where his heart is, Bishop Jerry L. Maynard, Sr. hosted a community meeting at his church on Thursday, November 17, 2016 to hear from The National Museum of African American Music (NMAAM). Maynard believes in the project so much that he announced a $10,000 personal gift to NMAAM in order to keep the progress moving forward. He is challenging other pastors, faith and community leaders to get involved and support NMAAM to move the project forward.
“I want my community to come together and stop the divisiveness. What matters most is behind the entrance door, not the door itself.” said the senior pastor of Cathedral of Praise, Prelate of the Tennessee 4th Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction C.O.G.I.C. and Chair of the Koinonia Kingdom International Consortium.
“NMAAM brings the Music City brand to life for a community that has celebrated music long before Country music came on the scene.”
Citing that the development of the museum, which is set to celebrate African American heritage and the contribution that African Americans make to American culture – through music, the nationally known faith-leader felt it important to our community.
“After reading various articles and seeing recent news, It was imperative, to me to create a forum where the community could hear directly from NMAAM officials,” said Maynard. “This is a critical time to understand how we can collectively support this amazing project.”
Maynard became more engaged in the project after Mayor Megan Barry’s announcement in March of this year and became excited about its role in celebrating the heritage and contributions that African Americans make to American culture – through music. NMAAM and Mayor Barry had announced Darius Rucker, India.Arie, Keb’ Mo and CeCe Winans in March 2016 as national chairpersons for the organization at a press conference held at the Convention and Visitors Center, across the street from its future home.
For many years, the idea of a museum like this has been in the works. Though the location has changed, the desire to create this type of institution has stayed the same. Last week’s community meeting brought people together – all of whom share the desire to have NMAAM right here in Music City. Attendees had a chance to discuss and hear from the organization’s leaders.
Misha Maynard, COO of Cathedral of Praise, opened the meeting with a warm welcome and statement on behalf of her father, Bishop Maynard. Maynard’s statement followed, during which he expressed the importance of moving forward with this project.
After Maynard’s powerful statement, H. Beecher Hicks, III, President and CEO of NMAAM, took the floor. He gave the audience background information starting from the inception of the museum to where it is now. After providing the audience with all of the available pertinent information, he opened the floor for questions. What followed was a spirited debate, led by many persons who have a clear passion for both the museum and the African American culture that it seeks to preserve.