Pastor Aaron likens King to the Prophet Isaiah

Pastor Aaron likens King to the Prophet Isaiah
January 22
00:00 2015
(Above: Photos by Chanel Davis- Rev. Dr. Darryl Aaron addresses the crowd.)
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Rev. Willard Bass Jr. holds his award.

A man who wasn’t afraid to speak a word out of place.

That’s how Rev. Dr. Darryl Aaron, pastor at First Baptist Church on Highland Avenue, described the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to the audience that filled St. Paul United Methodist Church Monday evening.

Aaron delivered the keynote address at the Ministers Conference of Winston-Salem and Vicinity’s annual MLK Day service. Using Isaiah 35: 1-10, Aaron suggested that King, like the biblical prophet, was ahead of his time in calling on the moral consciousness of the world around him while standing up for those who didn’t have a voice.

“We need a word that interrupts our despair, pity party … and tells us what God has in store for us,” he said. “Every now and then we need a word that interrupts our corruption, steps in on our hidden agendas and calls us to do right. Tonight we honor Dr. Martin Luther King because he was willing to speak a word that was out of place.”

He said Isaiah and King dared to dream of change before things improved, knowing their dreams were too big to be realized in their lifetimes.

“People’s steps are slow to justice and they’re blind to injustice,” he said. “People who dare to speak a word of hope in the midst of despair have found the purpose of living.”

Aaron went on to say that King questioned the morals of the nation in the ’60s and urged people to stand up for what was right. He said that King’s call still echoes today.

“We need people who are willing to put their weight on the side of justice. Even if it looks like your weight will not tip the scale,” Aaron said. “You can make a difference even if it looks like the sun won’t shine anymore.”

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The St. Paul United Methodist Church choir makes a joyful noise.

He asked attendees to go forth with the hope that  things will improve and to make sure that when the time comes to be willing to speak a word out of place.

Bishop Todd L. Fulton, president of the Ministers Conference, presented Lifetime Achievement awards to Mayor Pro Tempore Vivian H. Burke and Rev. Willard Bass Jr., a former president of the Conference and an assistant pastor at Green Street United Methodist Church.

“This is more than I have ever imagined,” Bass said of the honor. “I had no idea that we would be on the journey that we’ve taken. I feel really good about what we’ve done and the leadership that I (provided). It was a blessing to serve the Conference in this way. I think we have been able to be the voice in our community and be hope at the same time.”

He also said he is relieved to be leaving the organization well-positioned to  take on the next big project. He used John the Baptist making a way for Jesus as a metaphor for what he has done for Bishop Fulton.

Praiser dancers from Mt. Zion Baptist Church perform.

Praiser dancers from Mt. Zion Baptist Church perform.

“I feel the same way. All the work that I’ve done has been on a high, and it’s a challenge to really slow down now,” he said. “Things are in good hands and it feels good not to ask ‘what’s next’ ‘what are we doing’ or ‘how are we going to get there?’ It feels good to slow down.”

An offering taken during the service garnered $3,837 for the Conference’s Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship Fund. Each year, graduating  seniors are given a one-year $1,000 scholarship. To be eligible , applicants must have a grade point average of at least 2.0, plan to attend and enroll  at a historically black college, university or institution, and be involved in their churches, schools or communities.


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Chanel Davis

Chanel Davis

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