Sunday Worship Service

Strange Neighbors
Lessons from the Past

Rev. Marta Morris Flanagan Preaching

10 am Sunday
January 21


Highlights and Upcoming Events

mlkRev. Martin Luther King’s Words on First Parish Arlington’s Public Witness Banners.

We are frequently reminded of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King’s magnificently eloquent calls for universal love and his non-violent leadership for civil rights. As we hear these words again and again, we have a collective tendency to settle into a one-dimensional, even sanitized, perspective on Rev. King’s work.

In his lifetime, however, Rev. King’s leadership was multi-dimensional and highly controversial.  His commitment to non-violence was not limited to the tactics of protests and civil disobedience, but extended to include opposition to militarism in America and beyond. While he worked tirelessly against racism, he also worked and spoke for the dignity and opportunity of people of all colors.

Rev. King spoke often about the corruptive effects of materialism and the failure – indeed, refusal – of our economic and political systems to provide not just food and housing, but also dignity and personal development, for everyone. In the last 18 months of his life Rev. King frequently decried the three evils of racism, excessive materialism, and militarism.

Essential to all of Rev. King’s work was a spiritual vision that was rooted in a theology with love at its core.  His role was that of a prophet. He called out the wrongs of our society, challenged us to change and reach higher, and encouraged us with hope and love. And he was willing to sacrifice his life for his values.

The fiftieth anniversary of Rev. King’s assassination will be on April 4, 2018. 

As we approach this milestone, First Parish Arlington will discuss Rev. King’s message and mission in a variety of ways. One of these ways is a series of public witness banners sharing a few of Rev. King’s many observations. Some of these quotes may provoke discomfort and perhaps disagreement. Our hope is to prompt thought, discussion, and inspiration.

The quotes in this series, with links to their sources, are posted here.

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