Two Civil Rights Icons honored at Historic Brown Chapel AME Church

Published 8:25 am Sunday, July 19, 2020

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Two Civil Rights Icons were honored Saturday morning at Historic Brown Chapel AME Church for their key roles in the Voting Rights Act of 1965 that began in Selma.

U.S. Rep. John Lewis and Reverend C.T. Vivian, longtime friends and Atlanta residents, both died on July 17.

Brown Chapel Pastor Leodis Strong led a prayer with Selma Mayoral candidate Yusuf A. Salaam, Pastor Lawrence Wofford, several members of Operation Resurrection  all paid tribute to Lewis and Vivian dedicating their lives to justice and peace for African-Americans.

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Wofford and Salaam each shared their memories of Lewis and Vivian. Wofford and Salaam said they invited Lewis and Vivian to the Queen City in the 1990’s.

“C.T. Vivian got his mouth busted in Selma at the Dallas County Courthouse fighting for the right to vote,” Wofford said. “Lewis’ legacy will never be forgotten.”

Strong, who’s running for Ward 3 Selma City Councilman, urged unity in delivering a heartfelt prayer.

“We have to be in solidarity to seize the moment and make the most of this opportunity,” Strong said.

Salaam encouraged each member of Operation Resurrection to comment under roundtable leadership.

Former Selma High School basketball coach Ronald Lane, a member of Operation Resurrection, brought Dr. Martin Luther King’s historic “I have a Dream” speech.

“Dr. Martin Luther King had a dream, but we have to live the dream,” Lane said.

After the ceremony, Salaam and Operation Resurrection members filled pot holes and picked up trash at Ronnie Sharpe Voeglin Park, CVS and Dominos’ parking lot, Christy Lane, Shannon Avenue, Plant Street, Mulberry Street, Jefferson Federal Credit Union.