The Diocese of Grand Rapids’ Office of Communications relays the following statement from
Bishop David J. Walkowiak marking the celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Day in the United States on Monday:
Today we honor the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. who encouraged Americans to stand up for equality, justice, and peace – the message of the Gospel. He showed us that it is possible to fight for what we believe in, in a non-violent way.
We reflect on the progress made and the work still left undone. The sin of racism which permeated our country during Dr. King’s time still exists today. I echo the words of my brother bishops, ‘Our challenge is to bring Dr. King’s message into the present moment in a way that inspires lasting change’.
Let us take time today and throughout this year, which marks the 50th anniversary of his passing, to take time before God for internal reflection, inspire change in our communities, and to love our neighbors as Jesus commanded.
I encourage you to complete an act of kindness for a stranger or to say an extra prayer for peace in our world as we commemorate the life of Dr. King.
Bishop Walkowiak encourages all to read the full statement from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) which may be found here.