President Donald J. Trump has proclaimed June National Caribbean-American Heritage Month, stating that, during the month, the US acknowledges “the significant ways Caribbean Americans have shaped our culture and heritage.”
“Americans with roots in the Caribbean have greatly enriched our society, contributing to the arts, business, journalism, technology, government, religion, the military, sports, and many other fields,” said Trump in a White House proclamation on Friday.
Singling out Barbadian Joseph Sandiford Atwell, Trump said Sandiford Atwell, “through his dedication to his faith, exemplified the unyielding spirit of Caribbean Americans.”
Born in Barbados in 1831, Atwell moved to the United States in 1863 and attended the Philadelphia Divinity School, Trump noted.
Following the Civil War, he said Sandiford Atwell “went to spread God’s message of hope and love to the emancipated slaves in the South.
“Due to the strength of his ministry, he became the first black Episcopal deacon ordained in the Diocese of Kentucky and went on to become the first black Episcopal priest in the Diocese of Virginia,” Trump said.
Earlier this year, Trump said he met, in Florida, with the leaders of the Bahamas, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Jamaica and St. Lucia “to reaffirm our partnership with the Caribbean.
“We discussed how we can bring greater prosperity to this important region, including potential opportunities for energy investment and enhanced trade partnerships,” the US president said. “We made tremendous progress, and we will build on these discussions to strengthen further the relationship we share with our Caribbean neighbors.
“This month, we recognize the vibrant culture and patriotism of Caribbean Americans that continue to bolster our country and enrich our lives, and we pay tribute to the strong friendship between the United States and the countries of the Caribbean,” Trump added. “now, therefore, I, Donald J. Trump, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim June 2019 as National Caribbean-American Heritage Month.”
Trump urged all Americans to join him in celebrating the history, cultur and achievements of Caribbean Americans “with appropriate ceremonies and activities.”