Monday, January 21, 2008

Lunch with the Pastor


On Saturday, I got to go to "lunch with the Pastor" with 6 children from our congregation, ages 3 to 11. This is a program that our Children's Ministry Coordinator started; the children draw names for the honor of having lunch with one of us a couple of times a year.

Originally we were going to have lunch and go skating, but with subzero temperatures throughout the day, that plan seemed ill-advised. So, instead, we went to a local library to hear a special interactive program about Martin Luther King. Local actor and singer Mychael Rambo walked in, reciting a portion of Martin Luther King's "I have a dream...." speech, and almost immediately after that, broke into song. He learned the names of the children, and engaged each one individually. He said, "Great people aren't born. They are made." And then he told portions of the history of slavery that "made" Martin Luther King great. He told us about the secret messages in songs like "Wade in the Water" (if you "wade in the water" while escaping from slavery, the dogs will lose your scent). He sang "No more auction block for me" and showed us how it was transformed into "We Shall Overcome." He told all of us to consider the Martin Luther King Day Holiday not a Day off, but a Day ON, a day to work for justice. And, somewhere during the presentation, he said recalled this quote from Dr King:

In the end we will not remember the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.

The work is not done; Martin Luther King's dream is not yet fully-realized.

Let us not be silent.
image from here

11 comments:

FranIAm said...

Diane- what an activity to share with the kids. This sounded like such a powerful experience.

And our work is never done is it? We carry on.

Grandmère Mimi said...

In the end we will not remember the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.

Amen! What a wonderful experience for the children. That's interesting about the layers of meaning in "wade in the water" and "we shall overcome".

Rowan The Dog said...

In the end we will not remember the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.

Isn't that the truth!

My enemies can't surprise me with what they say anymore. I honestly think I can't be surprised by them.

But my blind, deaf, mute friends...
Sometimes I know in my gut that they would stand by and let me be carted off somewhere... I know it.

Kievas said...

A great way to spend the day!

mompriest said...

What a great day!

You never know what will remain with a child and influence them for a lifetime - could be one of those kids is now changed forever...

And, I often preach those words to my congregation who is all to capable of being "silent"...

Jan said...

"In the end we will not remember the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends."

Powerful. I need to remember this.

So glad you did this.

Tiffany said...

Diane - what a powerful activity to do with the children and a great way to communicate value to them. I love it! When I was in college, I went to the Twin Cities to do missions work with the SBC and they were trying to get us to evangelize the Lutherans. Since you're the first Lutheran pastor I've "met" from there, I'd like to offer my apologies on their behalf. Yikes. Thanks for the blog love and I'll be reading you often!

Barbara B. said...

I like the idea that it's not a Day off, but a Day ON!

Rev SS said...

What a great idea, lunch with the pastor; and whaqt an awesome activity.

Amen to: "In the end we will not remember the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends."

When I was the preacher, like Mompriest, I proclaimed this often ... still do, just not from the pulpit.

David said...

What a great experience for both the kids and the pastor...and a good reminder of the "dream."

LawAndGospel said...

In the end we will not remember the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.

What a powerful message and what wonderful seeds were planted. And our work and our learning are never done.