PRINCETON — Martin Luther King Jr. was known as a Civil Rights Movement leader and activist, his “I Have a Dream” speech and his acts of nonviolence so that all people could be equal.
On Monday, what would have been King’s 89th birthday, many will celebrate the dreamer and what he did for people of all walks of life.
Locally, St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church hosts a Martin Luther King Jr. service Sunday with the theme “Harvesting the Dream.” Praise and worship will be at 3 p.m. and service at 3:30 p.m.
Guest speaker D’Angelo Taylor, multicultural center assistant director at the University of Southern Indiana, will focus on the topic “The Deadly Crop.”
Rev. Rodney Coffer said this is the eighth annual MLK Jr. event at the church. “It’s important to do something to recognize his life.”
Coffer said King’s struggles and accomplishments must be celebrated and they will celebrate his legacy by honoring two local leaders and outstanding citizens with a special MLK Jr. medallion and certificate.
Coffer said this year, they will award Travis Nolcox and Danielle Scott, who both have “a spirit of volunteerism” and are involved in the community similar to the dreamer.
Past recipients include Joyce Gooch Granger, W.W. George, Jan Ballard, Agnes Chavis and other locals.
Coffer said King was an influential part of history. “He didn’t just fight for people of color, but everyone.”
With the threat of inclement weather, this weekend, the Martin Luther King Jr. event at Lyles Station is canceled.
Stanley Madison, chairman and founder of Lyles Station Historic Preservation Corp., said he planned a movie and possible speaker Saturday, but decided to cancel the event and focus on events for Black History Month in February.
Madison, who was also honored with a MLK Jr. medallion in 2016, said even though the event is canceled people can still honor and remember King on his birthday Monday.
“I think we should take a moment to recognize his huge movement,” Madison said.
Madison said the Civil Rights Movement activist made an impression on many small African American communities like Lyles Station, who were impressed with his nonviolent approach and equal rights for everyone. “I think we’ve made accomplishments in the last 50 years, but we still have a long way to go,” Madison said.
Madison said King’s Day is a very important day for the nation. “Maybe go to church and pray hard and work hard for more changes for future generations,” Madison suggested.