Friday, April 04, 2008

40 Years After Martin Luther King

It seems fitting to pause for a few moments this morning to think about the life and minister of Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

My colleagues at the Shalom Center sent around the text of King's April 4, 1967 speech on Vietnam. It's worth reading in its entirety, not just for its historical significance, but what it should say to us today.

Here's what King said to religious leaders:

Some of us who have already begun to break the silence of the night have found that the calling to speak is often a vocation of agony, but we must speak. We must speak with all the humility that is appropriate to our limited vision, but we must speak. And we must rejoice as well, for surely this is the first time in our nation's history that a significant number of its religious leaders have chosen to move beyond the prophesying of smooth patriotism to the high grounds of a firm dissent based upon the mandates of conscience and the reading of history. Perhaps a new spirit is rising among us. If it is, let us trace its movement well and pray that our own inner being may be sensitive to its guidance, for we are deeply in need of a new way beyond the darkness that seems so close around us.

He could be talking about Iraq. He could also be talking about the struggles for full inclusion of LGBT persons or women's rights or poor people today.

I quote King in most of my speeches and sermons (and probably a fair number of blog posts as well!) He said, "injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere." Let us be reminded today that we must stand on the side of justice for all.

No comments: