By Akemini E. Ukpong
We are celebrating a legacy of struggle and triumph. Our people have fought for so long and accomplished so much in the trudging journey of civil rights. January 15th, 2011, marked the 81st birthday of a leader in our country who devoted the majority of his life to the cause of equal rights among all people. His name is Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
There were many celebrations throughout the week leading up to January 15 through January 17. One of the celebrations was the Martin Luther King, Jr. Ecumenical Service, which commenced at 9:00 a.m., at the Tabernacle of the Faithful Central Bible Church in Inglewood.
The City of Inglewood held its 28th Annual Ecumenical Service for the Celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. this year. This city-wide event sought to encourage, inspire and motivate its audience through performances in song and spoken word.
Dignitaries that attended ranged from Congresswoman Maxine Waters, Mayor Daniel K. Tabor, to news anchor woman, Ms. Michaela Pereira and Inglewood Unified School District Superintendent, Mr. Gary McHenry.
One of spectacular elements of this celebration is that it reaches out to the youth of the community and gives them a voice. Each year, essay contest winners are selected from varying grades within neighboring schools in the city of Inglewood, based on their writings in relation to the theme of the given year.
The theme for this yearís celebration was, ìBelieve! Achieve! Succeed!î. The students that were selected as essay contest winners received accolades at the Dr. King Ecumenical event and were given the opportunity to present their winning pieces of literature.
The event was prepared and presented by the ìDr. Martin Luther King Day Planning Committee,î whose Chairman is Mr. Henry Brown.