It happens each year at Greater St. John Bible Church, 1256 N. Waller Ave. in Austin. Hundreds of people pack the church’s sanctuary to honor dozens of college scholarship recipients. 

But this year, the money will be particularly critical, said the church’s pastor, Rev. Ira Acree. 

“I think it’s vital that our students have the financial resources they need and, nowadays, it’s that much more important that they have the village pushing them on and encouraging them,” Acree said. “It’s so much hopelessness out there, but when you have a pastor and other church leaders entering and inspiring young people — that’s invaluable.” 

Acree said 30 college students will receive $500 each, with two students receiving the Dorothy Love and Annie Mae White Legacy scholarships — each of which are $1,000. 

Acree said that the late Love was one of the founders of the scholarship initiative while White, the pastor’s aunt, helped raise him. The Annie Mae White Legacy scholarship was created this year. 

Acree said the scholarships go to new and continuing college students, and even a few graduated students. 

This year’s Scholarship Concert will take place at Greater St. John Bible Church on Aug. 13, 7 p.m. 

Musical artists will include Pastor Daniel X. Smith and the New St. Matthew Ensemble, recording artist Thee Teeya Skipper, violinist Edith Yokley and the Greater St. John Praise Team. Chicago Treasurer Melissas Conyears-Ervin will emcee the event, which will also be streamed live online.