Young preacher makes his family Proud

CHICAGO — The teen preacher addressed each person in the pew: the grandmother, the teenage usher, the unemployed father, the single mom.
“You are only blessed because you can be a blessing to others,” he implored, and the faithful of Greater New Mount Eagle Missionary Baptist Church rose to their feet in praise that could be heard outside on 123rd Street.
Some hollered “Amen!” Others applauded. One woman slipped out to cry, moved as much by the message as its messenger: the Rev. Donald Abram, age 17.
In some ways, Abram has followed in the footsteps of his father, now a preacher in Port Arthur, Texas. But he has managed to avoid the mistakes of his father, who did time on death row before winning his release and becoming an ordained pastor.
Abram has shown the congregation what can be accomplished when a community invests in its young people — and when they give back.
“God has given me the ability to reach many, and he’s been speaking through me and allowed me to be dynamic,” he said, sitting on the front porch of his Roseland home, facing the church. “It’s not me bragging on myself. I’m astonished and amazed by the things God has done for me. Whether it’s praying for someone and the power of God overcomes me or whether it’s just preaching the word of God and so many people getting happy and encouraged because of it.”
( BEYOND HIS YEARS )

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