Martin Luther King Jr. honored with prayer breakfast

Civic and religious leaders from the NW suburban "collar"" counties gathered on Monday morning for the first Martin Luther King, Jr. Interfaith Prayer Breakfast. Representatives from American Indian, Baha'i, Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Islamic, Jewish and New Thought spiritual traditions offered prayers and listened to Elgin historian and story-teller Ernie Broadnax describe the positive changes he had witnessed in his lifetime. The great great grandson of escaped slaves who came north on the underground railroad, he entertained and challenged the audience with personal anecdotes and chilling reminders that Dr. King's work is not done. He celebrated that Dr. King's dream of diverse peoples sitting together at "the table of brotherhood" was being fulfilled around the tables of this gathering.

Rabbi Maralee Gordon presided. Vocalist Lia Nicene McCoo led the audience in a spirited interpretation of her original composition, "All Are Welcomed Here." Everyone participated in a "Litany of Commemoration" for Dr. King. Young people from several faith communities served the meal. Following the breakfast some of those present proceeded to an ecological restoration project for the McHenry County Conservation District organized by Greg Rejsky from the Blue Lotus Buddhist Temple in Woodstock.

The breakfast was sponsored by FaithBridge, a newly organized coalition of the area's faith traditions dedicated to interreligious cooperation, dialogue and community service. FaithBridge also offers "Faith to Faith, Face to Face," a two year certification program in interfaith relations especially for lay people, which has received national attention.

Submitted by First Congregational Church of Crystal Lake


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