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Date(s) - Apr 4, 2017
9:00 am - 5:00 pm

New York Avenue Presbyterian Church


#MLK50Awake – Clergy, Laity, & Seekers Concerned about America

The 50th Anniversary of Dr. King’s “Beyond Vietnam” Speech

April 4, 2017

New York Ave. Presbyterian Church, Washington DC, 12:30 -5 pm

(New York Avenue & 13th St NW)

Vigil at White House, 5-6:30


April 4, 2017, will be the 50th anniversary of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s prophetic sermon “Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence” to Clergy and Laity Concerned About Vietnam, at Riverside Church in New York.  During the last year of his life, he struggled in the midst of war and governmental abandonment of the poor to create new multiracial, multi-religious coalitions to move toward the “Beloved Community.”

“I am convinced that if we are to get on the right side of the world revolution, we as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values. . . . . When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered. … We are confronted by the fierce urgency of Now.”

Today we see extraordinary efforts to subjugate the poor, the Black, the Brown, religious minorities, immigrants, women, those who identify as LGBTQ, those who need medical care, the press, the working & middle class, & Mother Earth.

Please join clergy and laity and all who see themselves as religious, spiritual, or ethical seekers who are concerned about America in this present crisis, for a day of reflection on Dr. King’s message. We will gather at 12:30 (PLEASE BRING YOUR OWN LUNCH) and begin with an intergenerational and interfaith conversation about our current crisis among Sister Simone Campbell (“Nuns on the Bus”); Rabbi David Sapersten (former dir, Religious Action Ctr); Imam Talib Shareef (Masjid Muhammad); Rev Anthony Grimes (Fellowship of Reconciliation & Black Lives Matter); led by Rev. Aundreia Alexander (associate general secretary, National Council of Churches).

 Workshops and teach-ins on the triplets of racism, materialism and militarism will follow.

The day will culminate with a Multireligious Call to Prayerful Action, inspiring talks by Rev. Aundreia Alexander, Bishop Dwayne Royster (Political Director, PICO National Network), and Congressman Jamie Raskin — sending the community forth at 5 pm on a March to the White House where we will hold a Vigil till 6:30.

See below for members of the Planning Committee

Please register here so that we can account for workshop space.


Planning Committe for #MLK50Awake

 Rev. Aundreia Alexander, associate general secretary, National Council of Churches

Christine Ashley, Friends Committee on National Legislation

Cherie Brown, director, National Coalition-Building Institute

Sister Simone Campbell , Executive Director, NETWORK (“Nuns on the Bus”)

Rev. Dr. Terence Ellen (Unitarian Universalist), Interfaith Moral Action on Climate

Rev. Richard Fernandez, (In 1967) executive director, Clergy and Laity Concerned About Vietnam

Rev. Roger Gench, New York Avenue Presbyterian Church, Washington, DC

Rev. Jimmie Hawkins, director, Office of Public Witness, Presbyterian Church USA

Rev. Mike Neuroth, Washington Office, United Church of Christ  

Michael Newheart, Friends Yearly Meeting, Adelphi MD

Jacqueline Patterson, Director, Environmental Justice, NAACP

Bishop Dwayne Royster, political director, PICO National Network

Rabbi Gerry Serotta, executive director, InterFaith Conference of Metropolitan Washington

Imam Talib Shareef, Masjid Muhammad, Washington, DC

Rabbi David Shneyer, Am Kolel, Rockville MD

Sharon Stout, Friends Meeting, Adelphi MD

Rabbi Arthur Waskow, The Shalom Center


(Institutions listed for identification only)