Fountain Park

People from the Fountain Park and Lewis Place communities gather at the statue of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Fountain Park.

Centennial Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. and the Fountain Park and Lewis Place communities will host a Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Observance, themed “Living the Dream – Dismantling Injustices in Community, Education, & Literacy,” at the statue of Dr. King in Fountain Park, adjacent to 4950 Fountain Ave., at 10 a.m. on Saturday, January 19.

There will be a brief service with speakers from Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, the surrounding community, state and local political representatives. Upon return to the church, light refreshments will be offered as the transition to the panel discussion moderated by Rev. Leonard C. McKinnis II, assistant professor of Systemic Theology and African-American Religions at Saint Louis University will commence.

Chasidy Allen (assistant branch manager - St. Louis County Library), Julius Anthony (founder/president at St. Louis Black Authors of Children’s Literature), Gwendolyn Diggs (assistant superintendent, Jennings School District), Lt. Col. Rochelle Jones (St. Louis police officer), and Rev. Jeff Moore (Webster Groves Christian Church) will comprise the panel.

The Jennings Warrior Marching Band, under the direction of Hope Walker, will lead the gathering in a one-mile march to promote peace and unity in the Fountain Park and Lewis Place neighborhoods.

To conclude the events of the day, a book bag and school supply give away will take place to support the youth as they start their spring semester.

In an effort to reach all ages, all grade levels have been extended an opportunity to participate in the Art and Essay Competition with honors being awarded during Centennial’s worship service on Sunday, January 20 at 10:30 a.m.

This statue of Dr. King in Fountain Park is the oldest of the three local African-American statues placed in 1978. Because of the service held on January 13, 2018, the statue received refurbishment after years of neglect in the summer of 2018.

Centennial Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) is a 114-year-old congregation located in the Central West End that believes in engaging the love of God by serving and supporting others, empowering our neighbors, and standing with those in need. Centennial’s mission and purpose are to stand in solidarity with others by doing what the church can to transform lives, communities and the many oppressive realities that exist.

“We are a church that is concerned about the plight of humanity and community and use the Holy Scriptures for our foundation for engaging service and mission as a key tenet of our faith,” organizers stated.

“Our mission reflects those beliefs with: ‘We are the people of God who love one another and share that love by building ministries that reach, teach, and win souls for Christ.’ Our vision continues to be "a lighthouse for all who seek the Lord" as we remain an anchor in the Fountain Park community.”

Rev. Derrick L. Perkins Sr. is servant and pastor.

For more information, contact Conchita Hughes at 314-367-1818 or cccstl@sbcglobal.net.

Christ Church Cathedral hosts MLK reading 

To celebrate Martin Luther King Day on Monday, January 21, Christ Church Cathedral will hold continual readings from Dr. King’s historic speeches and writings from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the nave of the church, at 13th and Locust streets downtown. Members of the public may sign up in advance for a reading slot or simply show up and take a turn from the very pulpit where Dr. King spoke in March 1964. An online signup page for volunteer readers may be found at the church website, www.christchurchcathedral.us.

History Museum hosts Rev. Traci Blackmon 

The Missouri History Museum will host “Beyond the Dream: A Conversation with Traci Blackmon” at 1:30 p.m. Sunday, January 20. She is the acting executive minister of justice and witness ministries for the United Church of Christ and the pastor of Christ the King United Church of Christ in Florissant. Her work has gained her many audiences, including at the Vatican and the White House. She is recognized for her early and consistent response to racial tensions exposed after the killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, and she has received several awards and recognitions, including the White House President’s Volunteer Service Award and Saint Louis University’s Community Leader of the Year.

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