On Saturday, August 28, faith leaders and civil and human rights advocates gathered at Shiloh Baptist Church to commemorate the 47th anniversary of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech and commit themselves to renewed activism for social justice.
The service began with a performance by the First Mount Zion Baptist Church Ensemble Choir and an opening prayer led by the Rev. Dr. Wallace Charles Smith of Shiloh Baptist Church. Lorraine Miller of the NAACP’s DC Branch and Wade Henderson of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights welcomed the congregation:
“Among all the days of the year, August 28th holds a special place in the hearts of all who know history, love justice, and believe in America’s promise,” Henderson said.
Reflecting on the progress of the civil and human rights movement, Henderson spoke about the work that remains unfinished.
“We will not be satisfied until there is a good-paying job for every willing worker. We will not be satisfied until there is a good school for every child, whatever her Zip Code. We will not be satisfied until we bring millions of immigrant workers out of the shadows and into the sunlight. And we will not be satisfied until, just as there is dignity in all work, there are safe working conditions and secure healthcare for every worker.”
The Leadership Conference coalition members participating in the service included:
- American Arab Anti Discrimination Committee
- American Association of University Women
- American Federation of Teachers
- Center for Community Change
- DC Vote
- Japanese American Citizens League
- Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law
- NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund
- NAACP Washington Bureau
- National Congress of American Indians
- National Council of La Raza
- National Council of Negro Women
- National Organization for Women
- National Urban League
- Opportunity Agenda
- Policy Link
- The United Church of Christ