Dr Reverend James Forbes, senior minister from NYC’s Riverside Church, came to the neighborhood last night to deliver the keynote address for Dartmouth’s MLK celebration. Rev. Forbes’ speech was called “The Source, Scope and Spirit of the Dream,” and interestingly, he argued that the scope of the dream included environmental care.
Forbes made a case that we have been trivializing Dr King’s dream over the past forty years, and ignoring the spiritual and environmental responsibilities it encompassed. Calling Hurricane Katrina “a CAT scan of the nation,” Forbes said that the devestating environmental tragedies of 2005 revealed the depth of MLK’s dream in a new and dramatic way.
Forbes cited little known passages of MLK’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech that point to his concern about creation care: “I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together. This is our hope.”
If Martin Luther King were alive today, would he be preaching the merits of Creation Care?
As an aside, Forbes was honored this November, along with Chelsea Green author Michael Ratner with the Jews For Racial and Economic Justice Risk Taker Award.