The ministers and their wives of several Clairton churches got together to strut their stuff in the name of unity during the Heavenly Fashion Show and Luncheon.

“This event was about all the churches in Clairton doing something together and coming together,” said Rev. Crawford James, associate pastor, Morning Star Baptist Church.

BRADLEY FLOOD and MINISTER ALICE FLOOD in their any given Sunday attire.

Committee member and lifelong Morning Star Baptist Church member, Robin Prince agreed with James.

“We wanted to do something fun that we could do in fellowship. We love to see our pastors and ministers dressed up and why not have them strut on the runway?” Prince said.

The show, which was held at the Ascension Auditorium on Park Avenue in Clairton, was a fundraiser for the annual Unity Picnic that is given by all the Churches in the city.

The picnic started in 2005 with just three churches—Mt. Olive Baptist Church, Living Waters International, both in Clairton and Blythedale-based Ebenezer Baptist Church. Just three years later other churches thought it would be a good idea to participate. Currently there are seven churches that attend the yearly picnic.

“The cost of putting together the picnic is determined each year by what we plan to do. We are trying to raise enough money this year to be able to rent enough tables and chairs so that we don’t have to use these from various churches,” said fashion show committee member and Mt.Olive Baptist Church member, Paulette Bradford. “We believe that it is good for the churches to come together to worship and fellowship in a casual setting, Most of the Black churches in Clairton are united anyway by families. We say we are one church in several different locations.”


The fashion show featured clothing from A Woman’s Touch Boutique in Wilkinsburg, Men’s Wearhouse in Robinson Township, Selections by Genea & Eric and Jus’ Us in The Pink, both located in Clairton. Hats were showcased by Timothy Crawford Fine Millinery in Philadelphia. Models makeup was by Mary Kay Cosmetic consultant, Doreen Mitchell.

Minister Gloria Ruffing, who modeled Clothing from Selections by Genea & Eric, was happy to participate in the fashion show.

“It was the chance to give my sister-in-law’s shop some exposure and I like to model. I think it’s good for the churches to get together, but we need to include our White brothers and sisters because we won’t all be together until we do, especially since we call ourselves Christians,” said Ruffing, a minister at Morning Star Baptist Church.

First AME senior Pastor Rev. Judith Moore said she agreed to walk the catwalk because she thought it’d be fun.

“I thought it’d be something unique that would exemplify unity and fellowship,” Moore said.

And that it did.

In addition to the fabulous fashions, other highlights of the afternoon included musical selections by Jami Puryear and Virgil Jones.

Other models in the show included: Mt. Olive Baptist Church Pastor William C. Calloway and his wife, Leona Calloway; Gethsemane COGIC’s Nuwanna Davis; Morning Star’s minister Alice Flood and Bradley Flood; Rev. James’ wife, Gloria; Rev. Moore’s husband, Leo; Rev. Charles Jones and his wife, Gwen Jones, from Morning Star; and Rev. Charles Wade from Ebenezer Baptist Church in Blythesdale.

Committee members were Paulette Bradford, Nuwanna Davis, Sharon Kim Jackson, Pamela Kelly Melvin Long, who served as commentator for the event, Robin Prince, Wendy Rice and Wandra Sparks.

“The show was beautiful and very successful. This may become an annual event,” Ruffing said.

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