This year’s Jaffrey-Rindge Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. commemoration will shine a light on Dr. King’s guiding principle of the beloved community. The event takes place Monday, Jan. 20, from 5 to 6 p.m., at the United Church of Jaffrey, 54 Main St. The ceremony is heralded at 4:45 p.m. by ringing of the Church’s Paul Revere bell as part of the National Bell-Ringing Ceremony, Let Freedom Ring: Choose Non-Violence, and followed by a reception and exhibit in the parish hall.
Dr. King often invoked the goal of the beloved community, as in his speech, Justice Without Violence, 1957: “…. the aftermath of violence is bitterness; the aftermath of non-violence is the creation of the beloved community. . . This is a method that seeks to transform and to redeem, and win the friendship of the opponent, and make it possible for men to live together as brothers in a community, and not continually live with bitterness and friction.”
N.H. Youth Poet Laureate Rachel Sturges will open the ceremonies with an original poem. Sturges will share selected poems from poetry workshops with elementary students on the theme of beloved community.
JerriAnne Boggis of the Black Heritage Trail of New Hampshire will deliver the keynote speech. A writer, educator and community activist, Boggis has dedicated herself to recovering black history in New Hampshire and enlarging our understanding of who has been and is part of the New Hampshire community.
The program also includes awards in the MLK Student Poetry Contest and music by school choirs. Benches built and painted by volunteers for MLK National Day of Service will be presented to the Jaffrey and Rindge communities.
This year’s MLK activities also include the showing of two movies. “Shadows Fall North,” a documentary about the history of Africans and African-Americans in New Hampshire, will be shown Thursday, Jan. 16, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Jaffrey Public Library, and Tuesday, Jan. 21, from 6 to 8 p.m. (weather date Jan. 23) at Ingalls Memorial Library in Rindge.
On Saturday, Jan. 18, from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Jaffrey Woman’s Club, The Park Theatre will present “The Great Debaters,” a feature film starring Denzel Washington based on a true story about the unlikely ascent of the debate team from a small black college to the national championships.
Information: 562-8464 or firstname.lastname@example.org; or search for MLK Celebration Jaffrey-Rindge on Facebook.