“I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality…I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality.” – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
War. Poverty. Hunger. Disease. Slavery. The times have changed since Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. accepted the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964, but many of the same injustices remain. We read news headlines about conflict altering the lives of millions. More than 1 billion people in the world live on less than $1.25 a day. It’s estimated that 805 million don’t have enough to eat on a regular basis. 1.5 million children under the age of 5 died from vaccine-preventable diseases in 2008. And more than 20 million people are held in slavery today.
These statistics seem grim, but as we remember MLK’s legacy this month, we also shed light on the hope that is changing the atmosphere and are surrounded by stories of peace and brotherhood.
In word and deed, World Relief staff and volunteers work through local churches around the globe to make sure this hope is tangible. Whether it’s training local church leaders to peacefully resolve conflicts within their community in places like war-torn Democratic Republic of Congo or teaching farmers in Kenya new techniques that provide food and a sustainable income or helping survivors of human trafficking here in the US, we’re seeing justice spread like wildfire.
There is still much to be done, but unarmed truth and unconditional love are in our midst and the movement for justice that began long ago is carrying on to completion.