Friday, January 14, 2011

Brethren bits: Brethren-related colleges observe Martin Luther King Day.
  • Martin Luther King Jr. observances at Manchester College in North Manchester, Ind., will feature ground-breaking Brethren pastor and former Annual Conference moderator Belita Mitchell of First Church of the Brethren in Harrisburg, Pa., along with stories of students and faculty who also have breached barriers. Mitchell, the first African-American woman to serve in the denomination’s highest elected office, will bring the keynote address for the MLK Service of Celebration and Rededication at 7 p.m. today in the College Union. Her speech is titled "Navigating the Storms of Life...Excess Baggage Not Allowed." The evening also will include a student choir and readings and reflections on King’s legacy. On Jan. 17 at 7 p.m. in Petersime Chapel, readers will share student and faculty stories about challenging the status quo, as well as poetry and images. Refreshments will follow. The public is welcome at both free events. For more information go to

  • The Mac Diversity Team is sponsoring a Martin Luther King, Jr. Day observance in McPherson, Kan., on Jan. 17, at 7:30 p.m. at McPherson High School Theater. McPherson College professor ShaRhonda Maclin will speak on the theme for the evening, "Light the World." Her presentation is titled, "You May See the Glory, but You Don't Know the Story." A release reported: "Born in Oklahoma City, Maclin says her parents, and particularly her mother, were her inspiration. When the local school system restructured, her family moved to an all-white community and became the first family to integrate their neighborhood. The experience broadened her capacity for working with people of other racial, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds." Other program participants include Mayor Tom Brown, the McPherson High School Jazz Band, Central College Quartet, and Aaron Robinson giving a rendition of the Black National Anthem, "Lift Every Voice and Sing," among others. There is no charge to attend.

  • The Bridgewater (Va.) College Black Student Association is sponsoring a service honoring King at 7 p.m. on Jan. 17, in the Boitnott Room. The service is free and open to the public. Duane Harrison, 1981 alumnus, will provide the keynote address, and the event will also feature musical performances by students. "As our nation and world face the economic, political, and social challenges ahead, it is more important than ever to recall the legacy of Dr. King, and to ensure that his dream of equality and justice for all lives on," said campus chaplain Robert R. Miller in a release.

  • For the past six years, Elizabethtown (Pa.) College has celebrated the life of Martin Luther King Jr. with a week of service and unique events. "Even though students return to campus on Jan. 17, their learning will not come from the classroom that day," reports a release. "Instead, students participate in meaningful community service work and attend special memorial events. The remainder of the week, Elizabethtown College students have the opportunity to hear influential speakers, listen to music, and watch films relating to Dr. King." All of the following events are free and open to the public: A candlelight march at 6:15 p.m. on Jan. 17; a gospel extravaganza that evening at 7 p.m. in Leffler Chapel and Performance Center; at 11 a.m. Jan. 19 Lynn Cothren, personal assistant to Martin Luther King Jr.'s late wife, will speak on "The Life and Legacy of Mrs. Coretta Scott King" in the Leffler Chapel and Performance Center. In addition, several films will be shown including "Citizen King," at 1 p.m. on Jan. 17; and "Ella Baker," a film and presentation by Susan Traverso, college provost, at 3 p.m. on Jan. 17. For more information go to

  • Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pa., plans to commemorate the King holiday with an Open Forum on Race and Ethnicity at 3:30 p.m. on Jan. 17 at the Sill Boardroom in the von Liebig Center for Science. Cast members of "N*GGER WETB*CK CH*NK"--a play which will be presented later that day at 7:30 p.m. in Rosenberger Auditorium--will lead discussion on subjects relating to the themes of the show including stereotyping, personal identity, the concept of "race," and more. "The performers...have gained many insights in their travels with the show across the nation and also from their unique personal experiences," said an announcement on the college website. Events are sponsored by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion.

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