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We live in an era of war and poverty, demonstrated vividly by the nightly updates from Iraq and Afghanistan and the chilling aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans. What does faith in God have to do with war and poverty? On Martin Luther King Day, King scholar and pastor Troy Jackson will explore the significant relationship between faith and social activism that marked King’s life during an era also plagued by war and poverty. In one of his earliest public statements opposing the Vietnam War, King connected his stance to his calling to ministry and to his first years as a pastor in the Segregated South. For King, whether the issue was poverty, civil rights, or war, people of faith must not remain silent:

Over the past two years, as I have moved to break the betrayal of my own silences and to speak from the burnings of my own heart, as I have called for radical departures from the destruction of Vietnam, many persons have questioned me about the wisdom of my path.. . their questions suggest that they do not know the world in which they live.–Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., “Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break the Silence,” April 4, 1967

Dr. Troy Jackson (Ph.D., University of Kentucky, 2006) serves as pastor of University Christian Church in Cincinnati, OH. His dissertation concerns how the people of Montgomery, Alabama, the site of King’s first pastorate, shaped Dr. King’s civil rights leadership. Jackson also served as a volume editor for The Papers of Martin Luther King, Jr., Volume VI: Advocate of the Social Gospel, September 1948-March 1963 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2007).

Added by rohsstreetcafe on January 3, 2007

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