On the day we remember the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, we hear a firsthand account of life at the forefront of the civil rights movement in Birmingham, Alabama. Carolyn Maull McKinstry was in the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church when it was bombed in 1963, she was sprayed by a firehose in a civil rights march, and she’s written about her account in the book While the World Watched. Carolyn thoughtfully offers a fresh perspective on ethnic reconciliation.
Carolyn steps forward to share her story under the deep conviction that recent generations have forgotten the struggle for civil rights in the 1960s. She describes the way her parents tried to shield her from prejudices by claiming that they couldn’t afford certain things, thus they weren’t able to go into certain stores or certain parts of the town. When it became clear that Dr. King would stir up the town to protest segregation, Carolyn decided to join the march, though many of the adults in the community wanted to keep the children out of the conflict.
Carolyn lives with the memories of being sprayed in the face by a water hose and losing several of her friends in a church bombing. Her passion now is to share the gospel of reconciliation with everyone, regardless of ethnicity, gender, or political ideology. In Christ, we are one, and there is forgiveness and unity even in diversity. The face of the church is one of many backgrounds, but one common truth – in Christ alone, our hope is found.
This program has been pre-recorded.