The Ohio University Multicultural Center in conjunction with the Ohio University Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Committee started off the month’s recognition of King with an event hosted in Baker Center Multicultural Conference Room on Saturday, Jan. 16. The event was sponsored by Ohio University’s Office for Diversity and Inclusion.
“Faith Acts” was a conversation between participants and religious leaders from the local and regional community. According to Tyrone Carr, the chairman for the MLK Celebration Committee, a breakfast is typically held on MLK Day to bring faith leaders together in discussion of civil rights, but this year it was decided that in order to open the events up to people from more diverse walks of life, most notably students, the event would be held in the evening and would take on a seminar style.
Rev. Mel Hoover, Minister Emeritus of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Charleston, W.Va., was invited by Rev. Evan Young, the campus minister of the Athens United Campus Ministry to speak on his perspective regarding “race relations” in the United States. About 15 students, residents and religious members of Athens and the surrounding area arrived, signed in and took a name tag.
Hoover and Young took the reins and led the group through their views on the problems the United States faces in race equality and the solutions the reverends see most fit. Issues of rising contention between the state and black communities, unfair treatment of black individuals and the historical significance of black recognition were the primary points of focus for the dialogue.
“I love to hear the stories of my black friends, but that’s just the beginning,” Young said as the discussion drew to a close.
The Office for Diversity and Inclusion hosts a number of events throughout the month of January recognizing King and honoring him by way of our national holiday. A full list of the sanctioned activities can be found on the Ohio University Multicultural Center website.