Religion News: Churches celebrate King, who found solace at Penn Center

A frequent visitor to Penn Center on St. Helena Island, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. holds a special place in the hearts of Beaufort County residents.

This week Beaufort County Ministerial Alliance, a nondenominational group of male and female licensed and ordained ministers, will honor King for the 20th year with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Holiday Observance.

The closing keynote address -- the highlight of the celebration -- will happen at a new time this year, said the Rev. Samuel Spain, alliance president. The closing begins at 2 p.m., and will not immediately follow the parade as usual.

Spain, pastor of Lady's Island Baptist Church, is proud King was able to find a retreat in Beaufort County during times of racial strife when blacks and whites had few places they could meet together.

"I was thankful to learn that Penn Center was where he and his captains came to strategize and take a break and get some rest, as they looked for some positive feedback within (the civil rights) movement," Spain said.

Spain said King's dream is a "continuation from generation to generation. (King) said 'I won't get there with you.' Sadly to say I won't either and neither will you. But there is nothing wrong with trying to reach for it."

Earlier this week, the alliance held a youth night Thursday and a gospel event Friday at New Hope Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Burton. The 20th annual banquet begins at 6 p.m. at the Lyceum at Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island. The Rev. Dr. Kenneth C. Doe will speak.

The annual parade begins at 10 a.m. Monday on Rodgers Street, Beaufort.

Herman Gaither will speak at the closing program at 2 p.m. Monday at the University of South Carolina Beaufort Performing Arts Center on Carteret Street in Beaufort.

Details: the Rev. Dr. Elijah Washington, 843-263-4620, 843-525-6689; the Rev. Carrie Allen, 843-846-8050

Other events honoring Martin Luther King Jr. include:

Spring Hill AME Church

The Sheldon church will begin its Martin Luther King Jr. memorial parade at 11 a.m. Monday at the church on Paige Point Road. A service is from noon to 12:30 p.m. Refreshments will be served. Details: Rosella Kelly, coordinator, 843-846-9751

Mount Sinai Baptist Church

The church will begin its Martin Luther King Jr. memorial parade at 2 p.m. Monday at the church and around the Booker T. Washington Circle. The Rev. Dr. Elijah Washington will speak at the 3 p.m. service.

Details: Edgar Williams, 843-846-8629; Marilyn Fields, 843-263-3319; Geraldine Moultrie, 843-846-6635

Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Beaufort

The church will offer a tribute to the work of King at 10 a.m. Sunday at the Wardle Family YMCA, 1801 Richmond Ave., Port Royal.

Details: 843-838-1399

All Saints Episcopal Church

A free breakfast will be served from 8 to 9 a.m. today at the Hilton Head Island church, 3001 Meeting St., as part of MLK Community Service Day. The memorial march will be held at 10 a.m. Monday at the Hilton Head Island High School parking lot, and the memorial program will be at 11 a.m. in the high school’s Visual and Performing Arts Center. Canned goods will be collected at each event.

Details: Jennifer Gajdalo, 843-681-3881

Campbell Chapel AME Church

A Martin Luther King Jr. memorial banquet will be held at 6 p.m. today at the church, 25 Boundary St., Bluffton. Savannah Mayor Otis Johnson will be the guest speaker. Tickets are $25. A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Monday at Ulmer Auditorium in Bluffton Town Hall. A memorial walk/parade begins at 2 p.m. There will be a cookout at 3 p.m.

Details: Dee Anderson, 843-263-8704; Anne Cooke, 843-757-3417


District Three of the Old Ashley Baptist Association meets at 9 a.m. today at Laurel Bay Baptist Church. The Rev. Paul Graham is the host pastor. The church is on Joe Frazier Road, Burton.

Details: the Rev. Joseph McKnight, 843-252-7855; the Rev. Joe Simmons, 843-812-6927


Shell Point Baptist Church has canceled its oyster roast to benefit TLC Ministries/Lowcountry's Addiction Recovery Program, which was scheduled for today.

Details: 843-522-8616


Friendship Baptist Church Male Chorus will celebrate its anniversary at 4 p.m. Sunday. The church is at 36 Friendship Lane, Coosaw Island.

Details: 843-521-4419


The Rev. Thurmond Tillman, the pastor of First African Baptist Church of Savannah, will speak at 4 p.m. Sunday during the conclusion of the 146th anniversary of First African Baptist Church of Beaufort.

A repast with the theme "We are Not Confused About Who the Lord is" will follow. Alexander McBride is the senior pastor of First African Baptist Church, Beaufort. The church is at 601 New St., Beaufort (behind the Chocolate Tree, downtown).

Details: 843-524-6886


New Hope Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) will celebrate the church's 88th anniversary with Family & Friends Week services at 7 p.m. Monday-Friday, and concluding at 10 a.m. Jan. 23.

Speakers and guests are: Monday, the Doe and Hagood family group with Pastor Kenneth Doe and Bethesda Christian Fellowship; Tuesday, the Brown, Allen and Aiken family group, Pastor Keith Parker and Spring Hill AME Church; Wednesday, the Young, Jenkins, Gibbs and Ladson family group with Elder Raymond Hamilton and Gillison Branch Baptist Church; Thursday, the Glaze, Williams and Allen family group, Pastor Sam Spain and Lady's Island Baptist Church; Friday, the Singleton family group, the Rev. William Carpenter and Orange Grove Baptist Church; and at 10 a.m. Jan. 23, the New Hope Church family, Pastor Edward Cushingberry Jr. The church is at 67 Parris Island Gateway, Burton.

Details: 843-524-6520


The Rev. Paul Graham, pastor of Laurel Bay Baptist Church, will speak from noon-12:45 p.m. Wednesday at the Lunch Hour of Power in Helen Galloway's Memorial Chapel of Chisholm Galloway Home for Funerals, 808 Bladen St., Beaufort.

Details: 843-524-6634


The Link church will host volunteer training for the Everyone Counts event from noon-1:30 p.m. Jan. 22 at Love House Ministries, 423 Parris Island Gateway, Beaufort. Every two years the homeless in Beaufort County are counted to help churches evaluate required ministries. Everyone Counts is from noon-4 p.m. Jan. 29 in the Charles Lind Brown Activity Center, 1001 Hamar St., Beaufort. Special giveaways and services will be offered to homeless people so they might come and be counted. Items are needed for hygiene kits, including tooth brushes, tooth paste, soap, wash cloths, deodorant, shampoo and razors. Coats and sleeping bags will also be accepted. Those who offer a service such as food, cosmetology, dental or medical care are invited to volunteer.

Details: 843-592-1352


The Pastor's Aid Auxiliary of the Nazareth Baptist Church will be celebrating its 29th anniversary at 4 p.m. Jan. 23. The Rev. Dr. Horace Williams of Faith Memorial Baptist Church will speak and his congregation will be the guests. The Rev. Leroy Haynes Sr. is pastor at Nazareth Baptist. The church is at 133 Seaside Road, St. Helena Island. Details: 843-838-7473


Author Joan Leegant will speak about her new novel, "Wherever You Go," at 2 p.m. Jan. 23 in the Congregation Beth Yam Social Hall. The event is hosted jointly by Congregation Beth Yam Sisterhood Book Club, Hilton Head Hadassah and Oseh Shalom Sisterhood. Leegant's novel, which is set in Israel, follows three Americans caught in the vortex of Jewish political and religious extremism. Formerly an attorney, for eight years she taught fiction writing at Harvard University. Light refreshments will be served.

Register at: 843-705-3237,,


Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University will be hosted by Providence Presbyterian Church, 171 Cordillo Parkway, Hilton Head Island, starting Jan. 24. Classes are from 6:30-8:30 p.m. for 13 weeks in the choir room. Singles, couples and families of all ages and situations are invited. The first lesson is free. Registration is required. Cost is $100 for lifetime materials. Child care is available. Register at Providence office by calling 843-842-5673.

Details: Joe Patton, 843-384-6232


Unity In Action will host a Fifth Sunday Revival and Union Week at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 25-28. Close-out services begin at 11 a.m. Jan. 30. Host churches and speakers are: Tuesday, Church of the Harvest Apostolic on St. Helena Island and Apostle Joe Mole III of Vision Ministries in Hampton; Wednesday, Servants of God International Outreach Tabernacle in Grays Hill and Apostle Phoebie Chisolm of Holy Temple Church of Deliverance in Ridgeland; Thursday, Revelatory Ministries of Burton and Apostle Clarence Gadsen of Mountain of Holiness Ministries in Savannah; and Friday, Highest Praise Ministry and Prophet George Simmons of Light of the World Christian Center in Walterboro. The host church on Sunday is Church of the Harvest Apostolic on St. Helena. The speaker is Apostle Jerome Middleton, pastor.

Details: 843-846-6017, 843-838-2889


Assured by the Word Ministries is starting "Jonah: A life Interrupted" by Priscilla Shirer. This seven-week, Bible-based study with DVDs is from 10-11:30 a.m. Jan. 26 at Providence Presbyterian Church on Hilton Head Island. Cost is $15 and includes workbook. To sign up, call the church at 843-842-5673 or 843-338-2204. The church is at 171 Cordillo Parkway, Hilton Head.



The music ministry of Canaan Missionary Baptist Church will sponsor a retreat to Orlando, Fla., from March 31-April 2. The adults will visit the Holy Land Experience and the youth will visit Universal Studios and a variety of other activities. Final day to register is March 1. For an itinerary, contact Evelyn Carter at 843-846-4115 or Beverly Ferguson at 843-263-8599. The church is at 908 Trask Parkway, Sheldon.

Details: 843-846-4175