About David’s Dancers
David’s Dancers History
David’s Dancers began in 2000 as a part of the Shiloh Baptist Church of Alexandria Youth Department under the leadership of Yolonda Earl-Thompson and Marlyn Josey. Yolonda’s desire to start this ministry was a part of her vow to God to help teenage girls to learn to respect their bodies and find value in living a holy life after she made a life-changing decision to have an abortion. While Yolonda had the choreography and dance experience she wasn’t sure of the spiritual aspect so she approached Marlyn Josey, who was the youth choir director at the time, to help explain what liturgical dance was and serve as the ministry’s spiritual advisor.
Debut of a Ministry
The ministry started with four members: Leslie Alexander, Danielle Ferguson, Brittany Glover, and Brandi Taylor. Later two more joined: Kirstin Banks and Ashley Smith. The ministry debuted in the fall of 2000 at Shiloh’s Homecoming Praise Rally. In the spring of 2001, they held their first Dancefest at the Lee Center in Alexandria, VA. In 2002, Yolonda and Marlyn took a leave of absence. Marlyn entered seminary and Yolonda answered the call of preparing for marriage. During this time the ministry was under the leadership of Kimberly Gordon. With the departure of the original members due to personal, spiritual, and educational reasons, the ministry ended by the winter of 2002.
Reviving the Ministry
In 2005, one of the original members, Leslie Alexander, had a life experience that would ultimately change her life forever. She went in to prayer to ask God for healing over her wounded mind, body, and spirit. After seeking God, Leslie found the answer to her prayers, which was the ministry of dance. It was the ministry of dance that had brought her through time and time again and it was now time for Leslie to step out and revive the ministry.
God opened the door for the Dance Ministry to become a part of the Praise and Worship Ministry. Even though the first dance only consisted of two members (Leslie, and Yolonda), Leslie already knew in her heart that if she stayed diligent that God would bless her as well as the ministry. After reflecting on how much the ministry blessed her in her younger years, she felt led to offer this experience to other youth in Shiloh as well. The ministry immediately blossomed and David’s Dancers became a part of many of the special services for Shiloh. As the ministry grew, Leslie realized how much work it would be to continue as the primary choreographer and director so Yolonda rejoined the ministry and became the spiritual advisor. In the fall of 2007, God planted it in the spirits of Yolonda and Leslie to branch out beyond youth and to open the ministry up to adults.
The Ministry Today
Today, David’s Dancers consists of over 25 members ranging from ages 10 to 50. Every February they host a Dancefest at Shiloh Baptist Church. They have ministered at the Ladrey House, numerous events / churches, as well as in Atlanta and Detroit. On most Sundays they minister along with the Shiloh praise team and choirs. They have also assisted other local dance ministries in developing their ministry.