CHARLESTON, W.Va. – “I have a dream.” Those words echoed through The Mall in the nation’s capitol 50-years ago. But that message rings loud and clear in 2014.

Dozens gathered Monday at Asbury United Methodist Church in Charleston for the Martin Luther King, Jr. Ecumenical Service of Commemoration and Celebration.

Jennifer Smith/MetroNews

Monday’s service was held at Asbury United Methodist Church in Charleston.

Marion Johnson, remembers that day in August 1963. She was watching Dr. King’s speech on TV.

“It was so inspiring!”

She said the words and the crowd moved her.

“I have such high regard for [Dr. King] as a person because I truly believe that he was for all people,” explained Johnson.

John Miller of Charleston also remembers the “I Have a Dream” speech.

“Dr. King was so sincere,” he said. “I think that everybody who heard it, it had an effect on them,” according to Miller.

Marilyn Lynch of Charleston says it was like no other speech she had ever heard.

“I remember it was so dynamic and it brought a lot of people in this country who heard it, speechless,” she stressed.

During the call to worship, Rev. Joseph Jarrett, the pastor at Asbury United Methodist Church, recalled the words of Dr. King.

“Never tire of believing the dream. Stand for the dream. Walk for the dream. Talk of the dream. Be the dream.”

Also taking place on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day, a bell-ringing service for peace on the north side of the state capitol. Children helped Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin ring the state’s Freedom Bell in honor of the holiday.

The celebration wrapped up with a concert at the state Culture Center featuring the Unity in the Community Choir.

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  • Julie Palas

    Thanks to the hundreds of participants in the MLK activities in Charleston, WV! It was a wonderful and inspiring day!

  • Mountain Man

    Oh yeah and the last time I checked most of the NBA and NFL were mostly black players. If that were the other way around, there would be riots, burning of cities, etc. but since it's not, everything is ok. So perhaps the rest of us need a "dream" to right this wrong an demand more white players on pro teams.

  • ron "from morgantown"

    Unfortunately its still a pipe dream for major college football . Things seem to change on a daily basis , but last I checked of the 124 head coaches at the D1 level only 15 were AA.The Big 10 conference hasn't had a AA head coach in last decade ( that changed with the latest hire at Penn State ). The NFL isn't much better , despite the Rooney Rule , which is 11 yrs old . Do you realize it took Charlie Strong 27 years as an assistant before he got his chance at Louisville . Both Texas and Texas AM have AA head coaches , and that a good thing as it shows progress . Here is the problem - in the history of D1 football 28 AA coaches have been fired -and in all 28 cases they were replaced with a white coach . In fact only one AA head coach has been fired at a major school and hired at another ( Tyrone Willingham -ND and U of Washington ) . In all when you include Pres / AD / and D1 football coaches the total is about 90 per cent white . As one expert said , " this is more about unconscious bias then deliberate discrimination" . Another problem is AA head coaches rarely get a second chance at a D1 job . More often than not they will spend the rest of their careers behind the scenes as assistant coaches .

    • WVWorker

      What are you trying to say? Do you mean there should be a racial quota?

    • ron "from morgantown"

      CORRECTION , Darell Hazell at Purdue broke the ten year AA drought in the B10 last year .