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With poetry, songs and speeches, children and youth honored the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King on Jan. 16 at Fleetwood-Jourdain Community Center. The Chute Middle School Chorus sang “Another Day is Coming and Let Us Walk in Peace and Love,” and the Family Focus/Fleetwood-Jourdain choir sang “Precious Lord” and “Yes I Can!.” This year’s children’s message, presented by Julia Peppers was “We have been to the mountain top.” She said, “We have been to the mountain top, and all that is over the mountain top is refuge, love and support. … We have been to the mountain top when we complete our homework on time, when we respect our elders.” The mountain top, she said, was “that we saw this year the appointment of Eric Holder as the first black U.S. Attorney General, the appointment of the first Hispanic Supreme Court Justice and the election of Barack Obama as the first African-American president.”
On Jan. 18, several hundred people gathered at First United Methodist Church of Evanston, 516 Church St., and from there marched to Second Baptist Church, 1717 Benson Ave. The purpose of the march and the assemblies, which took place before and after the march at each church, was to honor and respect Martin Luther King, Jr. and to nurture “Evanston’s Beloved Community.” Many persons signed “Evanston’s Peace Pledge” to be “a voice and model for peace, non-violence and ethical behavior,” to “contribute to the unity of the Evanston community through generosity and service to others” and to “emulate Dr. King’s values of respect, compassion, and tenderness toward everyone, regardless of our differences.