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Bethesda United Presbyterian Church
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Legends of the Movement
Dr. LeRoy Patrick, pastor of Bethesda Presbyterian Church in Homewood, was a part of virtually every demonstration, sit-in, and picket line during the civil rights era as he pressed for employment, housing, and educational opportunities.
The Soul Pitt is the Heart & SOUL of Pittsburgh, PA!
. Leroy Patrick, Pastor Emeritus of Bethesda Presbyterian Church.Dr. Patrick was highly instrumental in the integration of the public schools and swimming pools in Pittsburgh in the 60s.He was ahead of his time with the establishment of a community and many social service programs in Homewood in the 70s.That was the Civil Rights Movement then.Where is it now?In November 2005, I was elected President of the Pittsburgh Interfaith Impact Network (PIIN), a 30+ member gathering of churches, synagogues, temples, houses, mosques and special interest groups.Our mission is to challenge the powers of injustice and promote political and socio-economic equity across the region, through the faith given us by the God we serve and with enjoined hearts hungry for progress. . Leroy Patrick, Pastor Emeritus of Bethesda Presbyterian Church.Dr. Patrick was highly instrumental in the integration of the public schools and swimming pools in Pittsburgh in the 60s.He was ahead of his time with the establishment of a community and many social service programs in Homewood in the 70s.end with the works of Dr. Leroy Patrick, Dr. Cannon Carter, Homer S. Brown, Nate Smith, and Dr. Helen Faison.
Testing the Waters
Reverend LeRoy Patrick came to Pittsburgh in 1951 as the new pastor of Bethesda Presbyterian Church in the city's Homewood section.Unaware of the previous desegregation effort, Reverend Patrick organized an interracial youth swim at the Highland Park Pool only to learn that the pool was for "whites only.""I didn't know we [African Americans] weren't allowed to swim in the pool.The more I thought about it, the more incensed I became," says Reverend Patrick.After requesting police protection, Patrick escorted his group into the Highland Park Pool where all the white swimmers got out.Despite verbal threats from whites, Reverend Patrick's group left the pool without violence.Allen and Reverend Patrick went on to "test the waters" at other Pittsburgh pools including Corrigan Drive and Paulson.At Paulson Pool, Reverend Patrick remembers, "they threw rocks at us."In addition to telling the story of desegregation, Testing the Waters is also a tribute to the lifetime achievements of Reverend LeRoy Patrick, a member of the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission since 1980.During his service as a commissioner from Pittsburgh, Dr. Patrick has overseen many changes to the PHMC including the establishment of a Black History Advisory Committee, the annual Conference on Black History in Pennsylvania, and the publication of an anthology on Black Pennsylvania history and an archival guide to Black history in the Pennsylvania State Archives.As commissioner, Dr. Patrick continues to support outreach to minorities in other PHMC programs such as the state historical marker program, the PHMC grants program, and the PHMC internship program.Furthermore, he urged the PHMC to step up recruitment of African American staff and exhibits relating to black history at PHMC sites.
Civil rights cornerstone: Robinsons honored for service to Manchester, city
Also, Jimmy Joe Robinson was an unusual minister, said Leroy Patrick, a senior Presbyterian pastor who shared in the civil rights struggle with the Bidwell preacher."He devoted his life to the downtrodden," said Patrick, "trying to make Christ real for everyone.
2001: Reverend LeRoy Patrick, D.D.
What's in the Time Capsule? :: The reflective comments of Dr. LeRoy Patrick at the dedication of Freedom Corner on April 22, 2001.