Brethren Colleges Hold Events Honoring Martin Luther King Jr.

A number of colleges related to the Church of the Brethren are holding special events to commemorate Martin Luther King Day, including Elizabethtown (Pa.) College, Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pa., and Manchester College in N. Manchester, Ind. (information is from college press releases):

Elizabethtown College marks Martin Luther King Day Jan. 16 with a day dedicated to service and a series of events, most open to the public (a complete list is at ). All day Jan. 16 there will be no classes, but community service activities will be offered for the campus community. At 10:30 a.m. is the MLK Program Kick Off in Brossman Commons, Blue Bean Café. At 11 a.m. the commons holds an MLK-themed lunch in its Marketplace hosted by the Office of Diversity with traditional southern fare. That evening at 6:15 p.m. is a Candlelight March starting at the commons, re-enacting the Civil Rights March to remember the struggles of the civil rights movement. At 7 p.m. an MLK Gospel Extravaganza and Awards in Leffler Chapel will feature community and college performers including Harris AME Zion Church Choir, the Elizabethtown College Concert Choir, St. Peter’s Lutheran Church Choir, and Jamal Anthony Gospel Rock. Awards will be given to faculty and staff members for contributions to diversity and inclusion.

On Jan. 18, at 11 a.m. a presentation, “Black History of the White House,” will be given at Leffler Chapel by Clarence Lusane, associate professor at the School of International Service, American University, and an author on race, human rights, and electoral politics. Also Jan. 18 at 8:30 p.m. in the Blue Bean Café will be a “Stand Up” session about what students stand for in terms of justice and service.

At Juniata College, Imani Uzuri will lecture and perform on Jan. 16-17. She will showcase and discuss her upcoming album, “The Gypsy Diaries,”  at 7:30 p.m. on Jan. 16, in Rosenberger Auditorium. She also will facilitate an inclusion-focused workshop, “Hush Arbor: Living Legacies of Negro Spirituals” at 7:30 p.m. on Jan. 17, in Sill Boardroom in the von Liebig Center for Science. Admission to both events is free and open to the public. Featuring vocals, violin, cello, acoustic guitar, sitar and daf, Uzuri’s music is both spiritual and meditative. She has performed in venues as varied as the Apollo Theater, Joe’s Pub, the Whitney Museum, and the UN. The “Hush Arbor” workshop will discuss the history of African-American spirituals. Hush Arbors were wooded areas where slaves would gather to mourn, worship, or sing. The workshop focuses on the conditions in which the songs were created and how they were pathways to catharsis, revolt, and freedom.

Manchester College celebrates the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with two special events on Jan. 13 and Jan. 16. The public is welcome and reservations are not necessary at both free events.

“Eyes on Economic Justice, the Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.,” is the topic of a speech by Christopher M. Whitt, founder of the Africana Studies program at Augustana College, at 7 p.m. this Friday, Jan. 13, in the upper College Union. The talk focuses on King’s push for economic justice, what he saw as the next frontier in the Civil Rights Movement. Whitt will deliver his message from the same podium Dr. King used on Feb. 1, 1968, at Manchester College as he gave his final campus speech, two months before his assassination.

Manchester continues its celebration at 7 p.m. on Jan. 16 in Petersime Chapel with an interfaith gathering featuring a hypothetical conversation among influential leaders about King’s dream. The Martin Luther King events are sponsored by the college’s Office of Multicultural Affairs and Campus Ministry. Find the full news release at .

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