Collect: Martin Luther King, Jr, Civil Rights Leader and Martyr, 1968

Martin Luther King, Jr. was born on January 15, 1929, in Atlanta. […] King lived in constant danger: his home was dynamited, he was almost fatally stabbed, and he was harassed by death threats. He was even jailed 30 times; but through it all he was sustained by his deep faith. […] After preaching at Washington Cathedral on March 31, 1968, King went to Memphis in support of sanitation workers in their struggle for better wages. There, he proclaimed that he had been “to the mountain-top” and had seen “the Promised Land,” and that he knew that one day he and his people would be “free at last.” On the following day, April 4, he was cut down by an assassin’s bullet.

Lesser Feasts and Fasts

Martin Luther King, Jr.Commemorations in the Episcopal Church often occur on the day the Holy Woman or the Holy Man entered into glory. While America remembers Martin Luther King, Jr. on his birthday (Jan. 15) the Episcopal Church remembers him on April 4, the day he was assassinated. In the collect for the day we pray for the strength to resist oppression with love. May it be so in all that we say and do so that “all [God’s] children [may enjoy] the blessed liberty of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.” ~Fr. Dan

Almighty God, by the hand of Moses your servant you led your people out of slavery, and made them free at last: Grant that your Church, following the example of your prophet Martin Luther King, may resist oppression in the name of your love, and may secure for all your children the blessed liberty of the Gospel of Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.  Amen.

Like Roman Catholics and the Orthodox, Episcopalians honor our ancestors in the faith, men and women of exceptional character and action as Christ-followers, who inspire and encourage us along the Way. The Collect used on the day they are honored often asks for graces to become a better Christ-follower in our day and in our lives. What did you hear today?

For further reading

Author: Daniel Rondeau

I am a husband and father and an Episcopal Priest (from the Diocese of San Diego; "Retired" due to illness).

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