Sharon Stringer - At the Inauguration | A small world

Sunday, Jan. 20, 2013

Just when I thought that attending the inaugural activities was all about experiencing new activities and making new friends, I was again reminded by how very small a city of more than 1 million residents and visitors really is.

Sunday morning after a late night at The Root’s inauguration ball, I decided to attend the second service at Shiloh Baptist Church. Shiloh is about a block from my daughter’s apartment, and I slipped into to service shortly before it began. Sitting in one of the pews was Penn State University employee, Joyce Hopson King with two friends.

King is the director of diversity enhancement in the College of Human Development and was in town to celebrate the inauguration. King was visiting her childhood church in northwest Washington, D.C. Shiloh was founded during the Civil War by former slaves and is celebrating its 150th anniversary throughout the year. The pastor is the Rev. Wallace Charles Smith, who came under attack by conservatives when he defended President Barack Obama during what he called in his sermon Sunday a “hellish” campaign.

King says she will bypass the crowds at the inauguration and substitute an event at the Newseum, an interactive museum for news and journalism enthusiasts.

Sharon Stringer is a professor of communication at Lock Haven University and is writing this blog from Washington, D.C. Contact her at Continue to follow Stringer’s blog each day online at