Campus & Community

Celebration of King’s life set for Memorial Church

2 min read

A celebration of the life and mission of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. will be held Monday (Jan. 19) at 5 p.m. in the Memorial Church. Gary Orfield, professor of education and social policy at the Graduate School of Education, will deliver the keynote address: “Don’t Just Activate – Celebrate!”

Honoring the enduring challenge of King’s “I Have a Dream” speech, the congregation will be invited to fill out cards with their own “Personal Pledge to Act” – a personal vow to uphold justice and human dignity at home, in the

President Summers’ message about Martin Luther King Jr. Day

workplace, neighborhood, or school. Cards will be collected and some will be read aloud by students during the service. Jennifer Hawkins ’04 will deliver an excerpt from King’s “I Have a Dream” speech.

The Kuumba Singers of Harvard College will perform during the service. A 90-member choir founded in 1970 as a source of strength and unity for black students, the Kuumba Singers share and explore the rich musical tradition of black culture through African folk songs, Negro spirituals, traditional and contemporary gospel, master choral works, and original composition.

Harvard’s United Ministry, a group of 38 chaplains representing different faiths, whose primary mission is to work with and provide services for undergraduates and graduate students, sponsors the annual service. The Memorial Church, the Harvard Foundation for Intercultural and Race Relations, Harvard’s Black Students Association, and the Civil Rights Project at Harvard University co-sponsor the event.

A reception with refreshments, sponsored by the Harvard Foundation for Intercultural and Race Relations, will be held immediately following the service in Lehman Hall (Dudley House) in Harvard Yard. Harvard Hillel will provide a “Kosher Corner” with additional refreshments.

For more information, visit, or contact Debra Dawson of the United Ministry at Harvard at (617) 495-5529.