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Editorial: How to celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy in Harford County

On Monday, we will celebrate the legacy of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., a minister and social activist who was a key leader in the civil rights movement during the 1950s until he was assassinated in 1968.

There are a few opportunities to learn about King’s teachings, his legacy and how to carry it forward in Harford County in the coming days.

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On Sunday, religions leaders from Christian, Jewish and Muslim congregations will come together to celebrate King as The Harford County Alliance of Abrahamic Faiths. The group is made of St. James A.M.E. in Havre de Grace, Temple Adas Shalom also in Havre de Grace and at the Masjid Al Falaah in Abingdon, where this year’s celebration will be hosted from 3 to 5 p.m. on Sunday.

The idea is to find share values and commonalities among the three faiths and then work on living out those values in King’s honor.

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On Monday, the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Harford County is offering its first Dr. King Service entitled The Embodiment of Unitarian Universalism in Civil Rights.

The service, held from 1 to 3 p.m. at 2515 Churchville Road, will highlight how the seven principles of Unitarian Universalism are embodied within the promotion of civil rights, and how strategists within the civil rights movement practiced and promoted such principles.

This year also marks the 25th anniversary of the Dr. King’s birthday being celebrated as a national day of service.

It is the only federal holiday to be observed this way, done so to honor his life and the legacy of his teachings by asking communities to come together and take action to solve problems on our doorsteps.

Often referred to as a "A Day On, Not a Day Off,” groups across the country organize volunteer efforts.

The Edgewood Boys & Girls Club, located at 2002 Cedar Drive, will be hosting a “Day of Service Focused on Wellness in Diverse Communities,” from noon to 5 p.m. on Monday. The event will feature food, games, educational and volunteer opportunities. The Keystone Club will also be collecting donations of ethnic haircare products to support Project Homeless Connect, as part of the volunteer efforts.

Dr. King’s legacy of service can be lived today through volunteerism. There are also countless nonprofit agencies and organizations around Harford County that are always in need of volunteers. Many of these groups rely on volunteer hours to achieve their mission. To find volunteer opportunities in your community, visit harfordcountymd.gov/735/volunteer-harford.

And remember, in the words of Dr. King, “Everybody can be great, because anybody can serve."

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