Bishop Crudup: King’s dream can be fulfilled

Published 3:39 pm Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Bishop Ronnie Crudup Sr. had a challenge for people attending Monday night’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday Celebration — get up, get active and change your community.

“Dr. King challenged us with the “I Have A Dream Speech,” Crudup, the senior pastor of New Horizon Church International, told the estimated 100 people attending the program at the Vicksburg Convention Center. “He did not challenge us with a ‘I Have A Fantasy’ speech.

“The difference in that dream and a fantasy is basically this — a dream can come true. Dr. King gave us that ‘I Have A Dream’ speech, and I am here to say to you that Dr. King’s dream can be fulfilled.”

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And parts of that speech, Crudup said, have been fulfilled.

“In fact, had part of that speech not been fulfilled, all of us would not be here tonight. The reality that we can come together tonight in Vicksburg, Miss. All of us from all the various places we’re from, economic classes we’re from, various colors, all of that once again means that part of Dr. King’s speech have been fulfilled.”

And if some parts of the dream have been fulfilled, he said, “Then that should really convince us that all of it can be fulfilled.”

Too often, Crudup said, people hear about King’s dream, and other encouraging messages, “And we sit around and just wait.

“Dr. King’s speech is not one of those wonderful speeches that we hear; it never was intended to be nice sound bites. It was always intended to be a point of conviction to encourage, to push the people of America to make change. And if we’re not making change, then we’re doing his speech a disservice.”

King’s dream, he said, can be fulfilled if people willing to use the ability and the power they already to have to make the changes.

“Everything that’s needed to fulfill that speech, we already have. The only issue is, are we willing to take the steps necessary within the power we already have to bring this about. It can be fulfilled if each one of us is willing to be a community change agent.”

Drawing on the line in the “I Have A Dream” speech where King said his children would be judged by the content of their character and not by the color of their skin, Crudup said, “Dr. King’s dream wasn’t just for his children. It was for all of us. For all of us to be change agents, for all of us to be once again problem solvers, because when we become that, the reality is we’re going to change things.”

Too often, he said, people just want to be liked, rather than getting active in the community and becoming a change agent and a problem solver.

“If you can help communities solve their problems, it creates a level of hope and hopefulness that helps folks do whatever they want to do,” he said.

“Instead of crying whoa is me, I’ve got this problem, change your mindset and understand that God left you here to be a problem solver.

“If we have people who would take that mindset, and understand that you’re on this earth to do some good for more than just yourself, you’re here to be a contributor. You’re not here to be a consumer; you’re here to be a producer of something good that goes beyond you. But you’re not going to get there until you change your mind.

Problems are God’s opportunities. Where God gives problems, he also gives resources.

He recommended people do six things:

• Adopt a street and keep it clean. Take responsibility for keeping the neighborhood clean and encourage others to participate.

• Become environmental chaplain at your job. Make the workplace a better place to work; encourage people.

• Mentor children in your community. Work with children in the community to improve their lives.

• Get your church, fraternity or sorority involved in the community.

• Get politically active. Register to vote, vote, become informed on the issues affecting the community

• Support good ideas and projects, promote and get involved with programs and project that can make positive change in the community.

About John Surratt

John Surratt is a graduate of Louisiana State University with a degree in general studies. He has worked as an editor, reporter and photographer for newspapers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post staff since 2011 and covers city government. He and his wife attend St. Paul Catholic Church and he is a member of the Port City Kiwanis Club.

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