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  • Writer's pictureBill Raines

33 Years MLK Walk Spreading the Message " Love Thy Neighbor as Thyself"

BEDFORD - (January 16, 2022) - The Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. March in Bedford started some 33 years ago when the late Bedford Mayor John Williams gave Clarance Brown the first go ahead for a march on the streets of Bedford.

Doug Saunders from the Men's Warming Shelter delivers a message " Love Thy Neighbor as Thyself"

The sun was shining, and hearts were warmed both inside and out as those gathered around the Lawrence County Courthouse to pay tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and his legacy as a civil rights activist, Sunday afternoon.

Today's message of Unity could not have been delivered more clearer and with message so important than that delivered from Doug Saunders from the Men's Warming Shelter who was asked to do the closing prayer.

Saunders message from Gospel of Mark is the greatest commandment was to love. First to love the Lord thy God with all heart, mind and soul. And the greatest was to " Love Thy neighbor as thyself,"

Jim Kirkman plays the" National Anthem" and " We Shall Overcome"

There were other speakers, which included Brother George Hamlin , Seymour First Church of God, Bedford Mayor Sam Craig who delivered the message " Be the Best You Can Be," and of course Clarance Brown in his fiery speech and song.

Bedford Mayor tells the crowd Bedford is a wonderful place to live, " Be the best you can be"

" I have a phrase that I say after the fact, it does not matter what my thinking is on whether we thought this thing will go. If you start something you just do not quit until it is finished. There has to be a finished product. You do not start something and mid-way through give up. "Press towards the mark of the high calling of God, which is in Christ Jesus, " said Brown.

" Dr. King did not let nothing keep him from doing something," Brown added. " Are we going to let weather stop us, are we going to let people stop us? God will show up and the people will show up," in talking about the 33 years the march has continued on in Bedford, Indiana.

" This thing will not be completed until All God's Children Shows Up, we are not there yet. We are more separated than we have ever been. Not only do we have race relations troubled, but we got murder going on, suicide going on especially with our youth," Brown exclaimed.


" We have people who do not know what to do, we got to lead them to a cause that makes them want to live. You got to have a cause to want to live, a reason to live. I believe the reason we have to live is because God gave life, and life more abundantly. And when he gave you a chance to come into the world, he expects you to do something with your life," Brown continued. " I am not looking for a crowd to get things done, but one man can make a difference, and that one man was Jesus Christ,"

" It is time for people to come together and I am talking about the Christians. Brown asked the question Baptists, where are you? Methodists, where are You? Pentecostals Where Are You? Jehovah Witness where are you? All of you people, who say you follow Jesus, and you are for the principles that Jesus has, then I look out into the crowd, and I see some of my friends, not all of my friends, I like to see all my friends, and who are my friends that is all of Lawrence County. This included Needmore, Tunnelton, Shawswick, Mitchell and Fayetteville. I will not be satisfied until they all show up like when I played basketball at sectional time,"

Brown made the comments prior to the beginning of the ceremony at the courthouse, Sunday afternoon.

The event was attended with about 50 -100 who listened to the speakers, sung the hymn, " I'm on the Battlefield, as well as the National Anthem played by Jim Kirkman with his trumpet.

Following the event inside the courthouse, then the crowd marched around the courthouse square again singing hymns before finally making their way to Dive Christian Church for a message delivered by Pastor George Hamlin.

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