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Honoring Martin Luther King

About 45 students, parents and faculty members of the Episcopal School of Knoxville and members of area Episcopal churches gathered in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day Monday, Jan. 17.

After breakfast at St. Luke's Episcopal Church, 600 S. Chestnut St., prepared by the Brotherhood of St. Andrew at St. John's Episcopal Cathedral, the group, which included representatives from the Episcopal Peace Fellowship, marched in the parade for the ninth year.

The Rev. Kirk LaFon, chaplain at ESK, said the school’s longtime participation in the parade reflects ESK’s commitment to social justice and equality, concepts taught to all students in daily chapel and weekly religion classes.

“The values Martin Luther King preached about and worked for, like fairness and equality, are values we believe in. His theology was based on everyone being made in the image of God and deserving to be treated with respect and dignity. By walking in the parade, we support the symbolism of someone who led marches and organized people to make a point. Our walking is a way for us to affirm that,” he said.

As part of the school's emphasis on servant leadership, LaFon cited renowned rabbi and theologian Abraham Joshua Heschel, who called his marching alongside Dr. King a form of prayer. “Even without words, our march was worship. I felt my legs were praying,” Heschel once said.


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