The Diocese of Brooklyn Vicariate for Black Catholic Concerns hosted a community forum this morning in advance of the annual Diocesan Prayer Service, commemorating the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at St. Kevin’s Parish, located in the Flushing section of Queens.
The morning dialogue on the issue of racism and the need to keep Dr. King’s spirit alive within our communities, schools, and churches was attended by more than 150 people. The panelists included Father Ajani Gibson of the Archdiocese of New Orleans, Deacon Kevin McCormack, Superintendent of Brooklyn and Queens Catholic Schools, and Ms. Lorraine Pierre, Principal of St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Academy located in the Crown Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn.
A midday prayer service followed at Noon in honor of the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The guest homilist was Father Ajani Gibson, a priest of the Archdiocese of New Orleans who currently serves as Administrator of St. Peter Claver Parish in New Orleans. The choir of St. Martin de Porres Parish provided the music for the service. An excerpt from “The Three Evils of Society” by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was read aloud at the service.
“As we reflect on his dedication to bringing witness to God’s love for all of us. Each of us is created in the image and likeness of God, and Dr. King wanted to live in a world respectful of the dignity of every human being. Let us ask God in His goodness to help root out the evils of racism and hatred within our society and create a community of acceptance and unity,” said the Most Reverend Robert Brennan, Bishop of Brooklyn.
“Racism is not just a sin, not just this separation of folks here on Earth. It’s a denial of what God has done and has done since the beginning. It is a denial of the very thing that God set in the heart of human beings when he created us,” said Father Ajani Gibson.
“Adversarial dualism, it’s me versus you, it’s us versus them, it’s the distinction that you’re not me and I’m not you as soon as I meet you. When I put you in a category like that, or you put me in a category like that, we are in a situation of separation, alienation, and discrimination, and what that allows me to do is treat you differently,” said Deacon Kevin McCormack.
The photos and video are courtesy of DeSales Media.
VIMEO link: https://vimeo.com/789859749