Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Service And You

mlk_ad.jpgOn Monday, January 15, we will celebrate a holiday dedicated to one of America’s greatest leaders of the 20th century: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Public remembrances often evoke some emotion in all of us, leaving us with a strong sense of history as we ponder a specific person or event, seemingly frozen in time. The Martin Luther King Jr. holiday is different. While it honors the man for his impact, influence and achievements in civil rights for all people, it offers something more.

One cannot learn about him without recognizing his passionate idealism and vision for brotherhood and sisterhood among all people.

And while he wrote and spoke in a manner that inspired millions, he also acted on his convictions, further establishing his iconic status. When we think of a holiday honoring an individual, we often create a vision of that person in our mind. But rather than speculate, here is what one person, who knew Dr. King better than virtually anyone else, can provide as an insight into the character of the man and his legacy.

Dr. King’s wife, Coretta Scott King, captured the essence of action or service rather beautifully when she said,

"Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is not only for celebration in remembrances, education and tribute, but above all a day of service [my emphasis]. All across America on the Holiday, his followers perform service in hospitals and shelters and prisons and wherever people need some help. It is a day of volunteering to feed the hungry, rehabilitate housing, tutoring those who can’t read, mentoring at-risk youngsters, consoling the brokenhearted and a thousand other projects for building the beloved community of his dream.”

And if you’re unsure how you can contribute, if you have always thought about doing some “good” but didn’t follow through, here is a simple solution. Visit and expose yourself to a plethora of ideas for service that fits your personality, abilities and interests. Years ago, when I decided to enter politics, two words resonated with me: public servant. I’ve always liked that term because it keeps me humble and focused on the true essence of my responsibilities.

And while I have been committed to applying my skills to the betterment of my “bosses” in LD7, I have never forgotten who I serve because of the expression. For me, being a public servant on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, and all other days too, carries with it a sense of fulfillment. I have never regretted being a public servant, and I hope that some of you find your niche in public service, too. You will not regret it. That’s my take, what’s yours?

"Everybody can be great ... because anybody can serve." - MLK

Join us this Martin Luther King Day as we launch our monthly day of service.
We will come together every month to serve and build stronger communities.

What’s happening this month:
Habitat for Humanity ReStore Revitalization

WHEN: January 15, 2018
TIME: 10am-12pm (People are welcome to stay longer)
WHERE: ReStore: 530 Route 38 E
Maple Shade, NJ 08052 United States

Please Note: This event is at capacity and cannot accept online RSVP's. Look out for our next event here:

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  • Janice Brown
    followed this page 2018-01-15 10:00:41 -0500
  • Kevin Perez
    published this page in Troy Talk 2018-01-11 09:48:20 -0500