FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
For More Information Contact:
Vickii Howell, Avant Media Communications
Phone: (205) 566-3131
Dr. King Civil Rights Cohort Launches New National Campaign in Birmingham
Economic Advancement as the Freedom Movement’s Next Phase
(Birmingham, AL March 30) – Dr. Virgil A. Wood, a co-laboring minister with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. for 10 years during the Civil Rights Movement, arrives in Birmingham April 12-13 to launch a renewed campaign to complete Dr. King’s unfinished work.
Dr. Wood has called a two-day convocation, “Remembrance & Re-Dedication: The 2013 Civil Rights Jubilee Celebration,” to begin crafting an economic plan that affirmatively addresses poverty and the resulting social ills that disproportionately plague the African American community.
As the Movement progressed into the late 1960s, Dr. King began laying out an anti-poverty agenda with the help of fellow ministers, including Dr. Wood. But that phase of the national Movement essentially died with Dr. King, who was assassinated in Memphis on April 4, 1968.
Since that time, Dr. Wood has worked tirelessly toward completing that agenda. He continued his education in economics at Harvard University and worked with other Movement ministers who soldiered on after Dr. King and built effective economic strategies. Dr. Wood is now poised to bring all the pieces of the puzzle together in a first national push, launching Fulfilling the Unfulfilled Dream Campaign to renew the process that King started before his death.
“For some time, we’ve been getting together with people around the country who are solving some part of the poverty dilemma,” Dr. Wood says. “We’ve just been waiting for some catalyzing factor that brings us all together to free the dream of leaving scarcity behind and reaching for abundance, for African Americans and for all people.”
The convocation comes as the City of Birmingham commemorates the 50th Anniversary of its pivotal role in the Civil Rights Movement in 1963, where thousands of non-violent protestors were arrested, including children and Dr. King himself. In April 1963, Dr. King penned his famous “Letter from Birmingham Jail” to ministers critical of the mass demonstrations in Birmingham.
The event opens with a church-style celebration and features Dr. Bryan Stevenson, President and Founder of the Equal Justice Institute in Montgomery and Rev. Dr. Aaron Dobynes, Former Pastor Tabernacle Baptist Church, Selma. The second day includes a panel of thinkers and activists in areas including social justice, economics, community building, medicine and law who will discuss ways to begin the national economic movement.
Dr. Wood’s convocation comes in advance of a two-day symposium, also in Birmingham, by the interfaith organization Christian Churches Together in the U.S.A. The organization will release an updated response to Dr. King’s “Letter.” Dr. Wood is among the featured speakers, including long-time civil rights activists Dorothy Cotton and U.S. Rep. John Lewis, and the Rev. Bernice King, daughter of Dr. King.
— more —
REMEMBRANCE & RE-DEDICATION: The 2013 Civil Rights Jubilee Convocation
In Honor of the 50th Anniversary of the 1963 Birmingham Movement
Epicenter of the Modern Civil & Human Rights Movement Worldwide
Location: First United Presbyterian Church of Forestdale
1375 Tomahawk Road, Birmingham, 35214
Friday Evening, April 12, 2013, 7:00 PM
-Mr. Bryan Stevenson, President and Founder
Equal Justice Institute, Montgomery
-Rev. Dr. Aaron Dobynes, Former Pastor
Tabernacle Baptist Church, Selma
“FULFILLING THE UNFULFILLED DREAM” CAMPAIGN
Economic Advancement as the Next Phase of the Freedom Movement
Saturday Morning, April 13, 2013
Morning Session 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
The Black Church: An Economic Harvest
A call-to-action for clergy to formulate a strategy to grow black businesses by connecting them to the massive economic harvest of the church
Dr. Virgil A. Wood
Sephira Shuttlesworth, Widow of the Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth
Panel Discussion Featuring:
Rev. James Ephraim, First United Presbyterian Church of Forestdale
Hezekiah Jackson, IV, Birmingham Metro NAACP
Rev. Dr. Jonathan McPherson, Chairman of the Board, Birmingham SCLC
Rev. Dr. Michael Wesley, Sr. Greater Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church
Rev. Dr. Thomas Wilder, Bethel Baptist Church
Bishop Theo Bailey, Christ Temple Deliverance Church
[NOTE: This session takes place at Sixth Avenue Baptist Church, 1101 Martin Luther King Dr. S.W.]
Afternoon Session 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.
“Freeing the Dream” Power Paper by Dr. Virgil A. Wood
A Blueprint for A Six-Dimensional Framework To Fix What’s Broken in Am-African Communities (How Rev. Shuttlesworth and A.G. Gaston Answered the Question)
Why The Economic Harvest Can’t Wait: Building A Stronger Economic Base
Panel Discussion featuring:
Dr. Greg Bailey – Minister, Economist, and Attorney
Ms Catherine Coleman-Flowers – Equal Justice Institute
Dr. Lonnie Hannon – Professor, Tuskegee University
Ms Gwen Austin – Professor, Miles College
Rev. Samuel Collins, III – Galveston, Texas, Juneteenth Leader
Mr. Bernard A. Sewell, Senior Deacon, Dexter King Memorial Baptist Church
Bishop Don Williams, Bread For The World, Washington, D.C.
Ms Shirley Cherry, Martin Luther King Parsonage Museum, Montgomery
Dr. Owen C. Cardwell, Jr., New Jubilee, Richmond, Virginia
Mr. Joel Slack, Respect International, Montgomery (Invited)
Mr. Fred Stawitz, Restoration Jubilee, Houston
World Café 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Where Now Do We Go From Here?
Community Discussion with Moderator Rev. Russell Meyers, Executive Director, Florida Council of Churches
For more details about the convocation or to schedule an interview with Dr. Virgil Wood or any of the featured speakers mentioned in this release, please contact
Avant Media Communications
Alternate Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
For more details about the Christian Churches Together U.S.A. symposium, Response to Dr. King’s “Letter
From Birmingham Jail” on April 14-15 in Birmingham, contact:
Rev. Carlos L. Malavé
Christian Churches Together U.S.A.