Monday, January 16, 2017

Call for Prayer and Reflection on Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Praised be the Incarnate Word!

Today is the memorial of Rev. Martin Luther King. An appropriate day to consider the transitions the United States government will experience this week. Transitions which will affect our ministries, our families and every country where we serve in unexpected and unforeseen ways.  

The fear, the concern, and yes, even the expectation and hope the new Presidency is raising invite us all to unite in prayer for the good of all people living in the United States and for all countries influenced by them.

Our Congregation lives and serves in all those countries this is why we are called to unite in prayer – personally, in community and also with other organizations around the world.  

And as we commit to the hope the Incarnation continues to represent for our planet we invite you to reflect using the words of Martin Luther King, spoken as part of his acceptance speech for the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964.

Today these words are as relevant as they were then!

United with all of you in prayer,
CCVI General Leadership Team

Martin Luther King, Nobel Peace Prize Acceptance Speech 1964 (excerpts)

I accept this award today with an abiding faith in America and an audacious faith in the future of mankind. I refuse to accept despair as the final response to the ambiguities of history. I refuse to accept the idea that the "isness" of man's present nature makes him morally incapable of reaching up for the eternal "oughtness" that forever confronts him. I refuse to accept the idea that man is mere flotsom and jetsom in the river of life, unable to influence the unfolding events which surround him. 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 refuse to accept the cynical notion that nation after nation must spiral down a militaristic stairway into the hell of thermonuclear destruction.I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. This is why right temporarily defeated is stronger than evil triumphant. I believe that even amid today's mortar bursts and whining bullets, there is still hope for a brighter tomorrow.

I believe that wounded justice, lying prostrate on the blood-flowing streets of our nations, can be lifted from this dust of shame to reign supreme among the children of men. I have the audacity to believe that peoples everywhere can have three meals a day for their bodies, education and culture for their minds, and dignity, equality and freedom for their spirits. I believe that what self-centered men have torn down men other-centered can build up.

I still believe that one day mankind will bow before the altars of God and be crowned triumphant over war and bloodshed, and nonviolent redemptive good will proclaim the rule of the land. "And the lion and the lamb shall lie down together and every man shall sit under his own vine and fig tree and none shall be afraid."

I still believe that We Shall overcome!

-Martin Luther King (1964)

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