A very special Martin Luther King Jr. Day speaker…

Posted on January 19th, 2010 by

Yesterday in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, the Gustavus campus had the privilege of having the Reverend C.T. Vivian come to campus as a guest speaker. The Reverend isn’t just any public speaker; he was a close friend and colleague of Martin Luther King and went on to do a lot for the civil rights movement, including founding several organizations and being the first person in King’s staff to write a book about the civil rights movement entitled, Black Power and the American Myth. Having someone come to Gustavus who was so close to the man who helped shape the course of history was really a great opportunity for the Gustavus community to attend. He knew Martin Luther King on a much more personal level and was really able to explain in depth King’s intelligence and his method in helping make America a better place for everyone; that’s not something too many people can say about themselves. In addition to talking about King, he also had valuable advice for the audience: “Radical loving is needed to defeat radical evil. If you love the world enough, you’ll find a way.” At Gustavus, students are challenged to “make your life count”; how each student that graduates from here will accomplish that, I’m not sure, but hopefully in the process of making one’s own life count someone else’s life will count as well because you made a difference. Martin Luther King Jr. and Reverend Vivian are two men who not only succeeded in making their lives count, but they also helped make other people’s lives count as well through their hard work and perseverance in the face of adversity.


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