Martin Luther King Jr.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

King in 1964

January 21, 2013 is Martin Luther King Jr. Day in the United States of America.

In his “Letter From Birmingham Jail”, King offers wisdom that might be appropriate for those who raise questions about the tactics of the Idle No More movement.

Some of those comments, as I see it, are below, concluding with a reflection on the role of the Christian church. One wonders if this quotation from King is also applicable in today’s circumstances where Christian communities that proclaim justice as their mission are not involved with the Idle No More movement. At the same time, given the past involvement of churches in residential schools, maybe reconciliation between churches and First Nations needs to happen first.

  • “We must use time creatively, and forever realize that the time is always ripe to do right.”

  • “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny.”

  • “We know through painful experience that freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.”

  • “The contemporary church is often a weak, ineffectual voice with an uncertain sound. It is so often the arch-supporter of the status quo. Far from being disturbed by the presence of the church, the power structure of the average community is consoled by the church’s silent and often vocal sanction of things as they are.”

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