On April 4, we are reminded of the day that one of the world’s most peaceful activists, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., was assassinated at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee. There was chaos and sadness as news of the civil rights leader’s death swept the nation. This year marks the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s death. To commemorate the legacy of the leader, many cities are having events across the country.
6:01 PM Bell Toll – On April 4, bells will ring across the nation at places of worship, college campuses or institutions at 6:01 p.m. to honor his legacy.
At 6:01 pm, a ceremonial bell-tolling will mark an international moment of reflection as the bell from historic Clayborn Temple is rung 39 times — once for each year Dr. King lived. These first bell tolls will be echoed at the King Center in Atlanta and at churches, universities, and other institutions around the world. Just as news of King’s death was first known in Memphis and then rippled throughout the country and across the globe, the local, national, and international tolls will follow at 6:03 p.m., 6:05 p.m., and 6:07 p.m., respectively.
Tributes from the Museum Courtyard – On April 4, there will be a free event that will consist of musical, dance and spoken word performances and reflections from civil rights leaders in salute to Dr. King.
The 6:01 50th anniversary ceremony from the balcony of the Lorraine Motel – On April 4, The community will gather at 3:30 pm for the official ceremony with the laying of the wreath, ecumenical liturgy, musical and spoken tributes, and remarks from civil rights leaders.
Gospel Reflections from the Mountaintop – On April 4, The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission and The Gospel Coalition will meet at the Memphis Convention Center to discuss the state of racial unity in the church.
The Martin Luther King, Jr. Nonviolent Peace Prize Award – On April 4, the highest award from the King Center will be presented for one’s commitment to nonviolence as a way of life. The 2018 Peace Prize Award Ceremony honors lawyers Benjamin Ferencz and Bryan Stevenson. The event will be moderated by the Rev. Bernice A. King and Atlanta’s legendary news anchor Monica Pearson. The event will be held at the King Center in the Yolanda D. King Theatre for The Performing Arts at 10:30 a.m.
I Am a Man Film Screening – On April 4, this film will be shown at the IBEW Auditorium. This is a film that chronicles the Memphis sanitation strike that began in February 1968.
Service and March for Humanity from Ebenezer to Morehouse – On April 9, a 3.5-mile walk will take place from The King Center to Morehouse College to commemorate the iconic funeral procession.
The Keeper of Dreams Awards Banquet – On April 4, the Birmingham Metro SCLC will host this year’s Keeper of the Dream Awards Banquet to honor individuals who have continued the legacy of the organization’s founding president, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.