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HomeCommunity Service and Service-LearningBelmont Celebrates MLK Day 2013 with Week of Special Events

Belmont Celebrates MLK Day 2013 with Week of Special Events

A student sings during the MLK Day Candlelight Vigil in Neely Dining Hall in 2012.

Belmont, Lipscomb, TSU students join together for MLK Day of Service on Jan. 19

In celebration of the Jan. 15 anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s birth date, Belmont University will hold a week of special events. The University’s theme for 2013 is A Stone of Hope as a reflection on King’s lyric “With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope,” from his “I Have A Dream” speech. The University’s commitment to Martin Luther King Jr. Week through classroom and special events began in 1997 and continues to grow today.

“A dynamic interplay between head and heart has always been central to the black homiletic tradition that Dr. King brought with him into the public square, so we hope that this year’s events at Belmont will reflect the best of this tradition, with an aim toward realizing the beloved community at least in our own small way. We know how hard this work can be and how ephemeral our gains can sometimes appear, so in the spirit of Dr. King’s brand of prophetic Christianity we chose a theme we thought appropriate for a Christian community of learning and service, namely ‘A Stone of Hope,’” said Peter Kuryla, assistant professor of history and chairman of Belmont’s 2013 Martin Luther King Jr. Commemorative Committee.

The following events are free and open to both the Belmont community and the general public. For additional information, visit Belmont’s MLK website at

  • 8:30 p.m. Jan. 21 – Candlelight Vigil in the Beaman Student Life Center lobby. In commemoration of the movement and Dr. King, join Belmont students, staff, and faculty as we walk to stations across the university, in the process contemplating different facets of the movement and the man who became a central organizing symbol for it.
  • 10 a.m. Jan. 23University Chapel Service featuring Corey D.B. Walker speaking on “Biblical Racial Reconciliation” in Neely Dining Hall. Walker, associate professor and chairman of Africana Studies at Brown University, is widely recognized as a promising and accomplished scholar and lecturer. He specializes in the history of African American political thought and culture, African American religious thought and religion and American public life.
  • 7 p.m. Jan. 23 – MLK Worship Service with the Black Student Association in Neely Dining Hall. This event promises to be an interactive, enlightening and fortifying experience for the Belmont community.
  • 3:30 p.m.  Jan. 24Belmont Dialogue on Diversity, Race and Ethnicity in Beaman A&B. Students, faculty, and staff will assemble for an open and frank discussion of how different people at Belmont experience race and ethnicity on campus. This event will be conducted in a spirit of reconciliation and is designed to strengthen our campus culture.
  • 10 a.m. Jan. 25 – MLK Keynote Address “Obama is no King: Reflections on the Black Prophetic Tradition” by Glenn Loury in the Massey Performing Arts Center. Loury, the Merton P. Stoltz Professor of the Social Sciences at Brown University and keynote speaker for this year’s commemorations, is a nationally recognized scholar of economics, and also a very prominent social critic and public intellectual. In addition to his academic work on welfare economics, game theory, and income distribution, he has published countless essays on racial inequality and social policy in a variety of national and international venues.
  • 10 a.m. Jan. 28 – “Maternal Depression and the Use of Corporal Punishment:  Does Race Matter?” lecture by C. Andre Christie-Mizell in Beaman A&B. Christie-Mizell, associate professor of sociology at Vanderbilt University, is a top scholar in his field, having published his work widely in a number of leading scholarly venues. His work focuses on racial formation and the complexities of family dynamics. He will present some of his most recent work.

In addition to campus programs, Belmont University will complete three MLK Day of Service projects on Jan. 19 in conjunction with Lipscomb University and Tennessee State University. Nearly 300 students will volunteer at Second Harvest Food Bank, Feed the Children and the American Red Cross. This is the second year the three universities have partnered as a tribute to King’s dream.

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