Monday, January 21, 2008

Dr. King: The Most Segregated Hour-- Sunday, 11 A.M.

In honor of the U.S. observance of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day holiday, I want to call attention to something Dr. King said after a 1963 speech at Western Michigan University: During a question and answer session with the University President, Miller, Dr. King was asked, "Don't you feel that integration can only be started and realized in the Christian church...?"

Dr. King's response in part was,

"We must face the fact that in America, the church is still the most segregated major institution in America. At 11:00 on Sunday morning when we stand and sing and Christ has no east or west, we stand at the most segregated hour in this nation. This is tragic. Nobody of honesty can overlook this."

I believe Dr. King's statement rings true over 40 years later.

I was reminded of this fact while watching a story ABC News ran on Sunday, Jan. 20, 2008, about a small, predominently Black church, Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church in Coshocton, Ohio, that decided to close its doors at once a month or so and visit a majority white church.

I applaud ABC News for doing a story on this topic and I especially praise Pastor Cliff Biggers and his flock at Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church for leading the way with this effort.

Rev. Biggers is calling for a nationwide effort for at least 1,000 churches to visit each other on June 29, 2008.

You can view this ABC News story at:

A story about Rev. Biggers and Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church can also be found online with the

There are a vast number of sites where you can read more about Dr. King. I like the biographical sketch and timeline of Dr. King's life posted by the Louisiana State University Library. is also a good site to visit for more information on ways one can honor Dr. King's legacy.

*I also highly recommend an article from the Monday, Jan. 21, 2008 Washington Post, entitled, "The Moment That Carried This Day." In this story, writer Allison Silberberg provides a wonderful, behind-the-scenes personal account about how the Dr. King holiday came to be. Ms. Silberberg was recently a consultant on the fantastic TV program, The Jewish Americans, a multi-part series currently airing on PBS. I plan to buy the DVD of this program someday soon.

Be blessed today by learning more about Dr. King and telling others about Jesus.

Your Brother in Christ,

Steven Kendall