Central United Methodist Church in Staunton held a worship service on Sunday to honor the achievements by Black Americans and their roles they played in U.S. history.
People of all backgrounds filled the pews at the church to celebrate African-American heritage with praise and worship.
Church visitor Collin Figuora said the community benefits from services like these.
"I think it fosters closeness with the churches, with the community, and not just African-American churches, but churches in general," Figuora said. "I think that's important."
Inspiration came in song, dance, and through the Rev. Adam Richardson Jr., who serves as a Bishop in the African Methodist Episcopal Church.
About 200 people came to the Methodist church for the special service, including Staunton's mayor, Lacy B. King, Jr., who gave Richardson and his wife keys to the city.
The service kicked off Black History Month and focused on women making a difference in the community.
Mary Baldwin College freshman Courtney Hicks danced during the service, and she said she's glad she and her dance team could help launch Black History Month in Staunton.
"Learning about my history and knowing where I came from, that's very important for me and also for everyone else that's in the African-American community," Hicks said.
Figuora hopes to leave the black history service with one thing.
"Inspiration," Figuora said. "I'm looking forward to being inspired again, and again and again."
Richardson was elected and consecrated the 115th Bishop in the African Methodist Episcopal Church in 1996.
He is the leader of the Second Episcopal District, which includes North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and Washington, D.C.
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