Limestone To Observe "Day Of Service" On January 20 To Honor Legacy Of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Charles Wyatt
Limestone To Observe "Day Of Service" On January 20 To Honor Legacy Of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

In observance of the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday, Limestone College will hold its inaugural “Day of Service” on Monday, Jan. 20.

In addition, Limestone will host its 17th-annual Martin Luther King, Jr. lecture on Monday, Feb. 10, at 7 p.m., inside Fullerton Auditorium. The featured guest speaker for the “Stop The Hate – Choose Love” program will be Reverend Sharon Risher, the daughter of Ethel Lance, who was killed in 2015 in the Emanuel AME Church shooting in Charleston. More information regarding Risher’s appearance at Limestone next month will be announced soon.

Limestone students, faculty, and staff will be taking part in several projects for the “Day of Service” on January 20.

Campus Chaplain Reverend Ron Singleton noted that the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday this year marks the 25th anniversary of the national “Day of Service” that celebrates the Civil Rights leader’s life and legacy.

“We’re so incredibly proud to have Limestone joining the ‘Day of Service’ this year,” Singleton said. “Our campus community is using this day to volunteer in an effort to improve our community and the world. Dr. King recognized the power of service. He famously said, ‘Everyone can be great because everybody can serve.’ We are observing the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday through service to honor his life and teachings.”

Typically, Cherokee County Meals on Wheels is closed on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, and meals are not prepared or delivered. This year, Limestone is going to prepare and deliver 375 meals across Cherokee County. The meal prep and delivery will be done primarily by Saints student-athletes from nearly all of its teams.

Also on January 20, Limestone’s Christian Education Leadership Program (CELP) will restock the food pantries at Peach Center Ministries and the Salvation Army in Gaffney, and the Iron City Ministries food pantry in Blacksburg. Singleton serves as the CELP Director at Limestone.

In addition, Limestone student-athletes will also be assisting the Salvation Army Thrift Store on that day by helping to clean-up and reorganize its Thrift Store.

With assistance from the College's Business Management program, Limestone's acrobatics & tumbling team is joining the Saints dance team to serve meals at the Salvation Army Soup Kitchen.

Between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m. on January 20, Limestone’s campus community will come together to package 50,000 meals for Rise Against Hunger, which is an international hunger relief organization that distributes food and life-changing aid to those in need across the world. Anyone from the community who is interested is invited to take part in the meal packaging inside Timken Center East, located on campus at the intersection of East O’Neal Street and Griffith Street.

That evening, Limestone will provide transportation for the College’s students who are interested in attending the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Unity Celebration at the Spartanburg Memorial Auditorium. The event will start at 6:30 p.m. and the speaker will be Dr. Gail Christopher.

On Saturday, Jan. 18, Singleton will be recognized at the Community Prayer Breakfast being held at Bethel Baptist Church. The event is sponsored by the Cherokee County Coalition, made up of a group of ministers and local leaders, which annually organizes activities in honor of King’s legacy. Singleton is receiving a Community Service Award for his long-time efforts to honor King’s memory in the area. 

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was a vital figure of the modern era and a pivotal figure in the Civil Rights movement. His lectures and dialogues stirred the concern and sparked the conscience of a generation. His leadership inspired men and women, young and old, in the United States and around the world. From 1960 until his death in 1968, he served as co-pastor with his father at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta. He was shot while standing on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis and died on April 4, 1968.

Legislation was signed in 1983 to mark the birthday of Dr. King as a federal holiday. Americans first observed the holiday in 1986. In 1994, Congress designated the holiday as a national Day of Service led by the Corporation for National and Community Service. Taking place each third Monday in January, the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service is the only federal holiday observed as a national day of service – known as a “day on, not a day off.” The Day of Service strives to help empower individuals, strengthen communities, bridge barriers, address social problems, and move society closer to Dr. King's vision of a “Beloved Community.”