On January 11 Rachel Hostetler and I attended the Martin Luther King, Jr. Interfaith Service sponsored by The Southern Christian Leadership Conference of Greater Kansas City and Jewish Community Relations Bureau/American Jewish Committee.
We heard an impassioned speech by Rev. Dr. Charles G. Adams of Detroit, MI. We heard King’s words recited by a Muslim, a Jew, a Catholic priest, a Protestant pastor, someone from the Bahá’í faith and a Sikh. To close the service we joined hands in singing “We shall overcome.” Earlier that same morning Kansas City’s very own civil rights leader Nelson “Fuzzy” Thompson died after a long struggle with illness. It was an emotional gathering, with shouts of praise mixed in with cries of lament.
The promised land of greater justice, freedom, peace and equality still seems so elusive. So much still divides us. Many are overcome with despair with the words, “We shall overcome,” barely ringing, if at all. Hatred marches on.
So does Love I hope. So does Love.
This Sunday at Rainbow we will focus on the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Junior, someone who refused to be overcome with despair and instead, reminded the world that racism and hatred of all kinds can be overcome by non-violent Love, and that generations after us do not have to miss out on the promised land.
As a way to prepare for worship, I invite everyone to view this video created by Kristin Neufeld Epp, director of New Creation Preschool in Newton, KS. Kristin is one of many people I know who is nurturing a new generation of “promised land” seekers and builders.
You can read more about Kristin and how she celebrates Martin Luther King Junior with children, by reading her entire blog post here:M is for Martin Luther King Junior-New Creation preschool blog
Warning: You might spend hours pouring through her other wonderful, colorful and inspiring blog posts.