1d – Kingston & St Andrew – Birthplace of the Ethiopian Baptist Society (1783)
We begin our tour by visiting the ‘birthplace’ of the African American led, Ethiopian Baptist church in Jamaica – Kingston. There will be visits to churches and schools established by George Liele (Windward Road) and Thomas Nicholas Swigle (East Queen Street), Gordon (Kingston Tabernacle). Hear how they developed congregations of over 10,000 members and gained support from Baptists in America and the UK to keep their churches alive during the persecutions of the Consolidated Slave Laws which outlawed their congregations. Visit Mambay Park Baptist Church, named after an enslaved African who was known to have had a healing ministry, Kingston Tabernacle, established by George William Gordon, and Hanover Street an African congregation once a part of the Windward Road Chapel, but given to Joshua Tinson who was caretaker of that church for 4 years as Liele travelled to England. There will be visits to National Heroes Park, previously Kingston Racecourse where Liele frequently preached, as well as journeying past the asylum where African Christians were frequently incarcerated, and the Fort where Liele was employed in his first two years in Jamaica. The tour will conclude with a visit to Clifton Mount Plantation whose owner had invited the Ethiopian Baptists to place a Chapel there for its ‘slaves.’ It is situated in the Blue Mountains and remains famous for it’s coffee, which you will be invited to taste.