In this day and age it is easy to become cynical, but as we focus on the memory of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. this time of year his words seem to penetrate a world divided by fear and lack of communication.
“I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality… I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word.”
This past weekend the Dr. King Scholarship Committee of Portsmouth hosted the second event of the annual series, the Silent March and the Memorial Service on Sunday, Jan. 10.
The events began when those attending the march stepped off on the main parking lot of Shawnee State University and proceeded down Waller Street to Living Faith Temple where the Memorial Service was held.
The march was led by the four scholarship recipients, who traditionally serve as the grand marshals for the march.
This year’s scholarship recipients were Hannah Simmons, Tia McGinnis, Tyrin Johnson and Kyre Allison.
The community then gathered at Living Faith, where the guest speaker was Evangelist Portia Williams, who spoke from this year’s theme, ‘Reigniting The Dream in 2016.’
Williams said it was indeed an honor to be a part of the Memorial Service this year.
“I have always esteemed Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. very highly because of the tremendous impact that he made upon our nation’s history,” Williams said. “So, it was an honor indeed to serve in this capacity. I am so grateful for the members of the Dr. King Scholarship Committee who work so hard to see that this great work continues in our community. My prayer is that each of the scholarship recipients will take full advantage of the support they have been given, and utilize all of their God-given potential as they pursue their educational goals. This is what makes Dr. King’s dream live on.”
Maureen Cadogan of the Dr. King Scholarship Committee of Portsmouth said it is important to honor the life of Dr. King.
“It’s so important to remind the kids of our future,” Cadogan said. “They have not gone through what a lot of us have gone through. There’s a saying that those who forget the past are doomed to repeat it. So we want them to be mindful of the struggles that our ancestors came through and came over and just let them know we stand on the shoulders of greatness. We want them to do better and to have better and to be better. So they have to honor and recognize the past and the past struggles and understand where we came from to get where they need to go.”
Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.