NEW YORK — Archbishop Elpidophoros spiritual leader of Greek Orthodox Christians in America, sent a video message via social media honoring and recognizing Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.
The full text follows:
My beloved Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
It has been fifty-two years since the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. – an American icon of non-violence, justice, and peace. His murder in Memphis, Tennessee those many years ago still haunts our National soul, for the racism that inspired the hate of his person and message, still persists in our country.
Given the unrest we have witnessed, let us use the annual memorial to Dr. King to ask ourselves: “What am I doing for racial justice, equality, and peace?” There is no doubt in my mind that the arc of History will ultimately bend toward justice, because our God is Righteous and Merciful. But we also bear a responsibility, to speak and to act in the interests of justice for all.
We must recognize that the wounds of centuries of slavery have not been fully overcome simply because there was a Civil War, or because there was Reconstruction, or when the Voting Rights Act was signed by President Johnson in the presence of Dr. King. Justice takes hard work over generations, and as Christians, we are called to that work.
And let us remember that our journey to justice is through love, and the creation of a beloved community where we love our neighbors – whomever they may be, as we love ourselves.
Dr. King said it best:
“But the end is reconciliation; the end is redemption; the end is the creation of the beloved community. It is this type of spirit and this type of love that can transform opposers into friends. … It is an overflowing love which seeks nothing in return. It is the love of God working in the lives of men.”
To that, my friends, we can all say: Amen!