“We invite everyone to join us for some good music and fellowship as we celebrate not just a man, but a message that has endured for over half a century and still has meaning for us today,” said First Baptist’s Rev. Rasheed As-Samad, who will be hosting his first Martin Luther King Day event and also serve as master of ceremonies.
DOVER Ashland University President Carlos Campo will give the keynote address when First Baptist Church holds its annual celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday.
The event is free and open to the public. It will begin at 7 p.m. at the church, located at 140 Regent St.
“We invite everyone to join us for some good music and fellowship as we celebrate not just a man, but a message that has endured for over half a century and still has meaning for us today,” said Rev. Rasheed As-Samad, who will be hosting his first Martin Luther King Day event and also serve as master of ceremonies. As-Samad became the pastor at the First Baptist Church in 2017, following the retirement Rev. Christopher Lowery.
Campo is the president at Ohio’s Ashland University, where he began serving in June 2015. He chairs the Hispanic Education Alliance of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference. He has been listed four times in Who’s Who Among American Teachers, and is also a frequent contributor to a number of national publications. Campo received his doctoral degree in English with an emphasis in drama from the University of Nevada in Las Vegas, where he was named 2016 Liberal Arts Alumnus of the Year, the highest and most prestigious alumni award given by the college.
As-Samad said he is extremely excited to continue the long tradition First Baptist has had in hosting the annual King Day celebration since the first federal holiday in 1986.
“We are extremely honored to have a leader of Dr. Campo’s caliber join us for what has really grown over the years to become Tuscarawas County’s premier event and celebration of the life and legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.,” As-Samad said. “Each year this event brings together civic and spiritual leaders from throughout the county to honor Dr. King and share his message of hope and inspiration.”
“While we still have great issues to overcome in our nation, my prayer is that we can renew the King dream to strive to make this a land of freedom and opportunity for all people,” As-Samad said.
In addition to the keynote address, there will be an inspirational reading by Tuscarawas County Commissioner Joe Sciarretti. There will also be two music performances led by vocalist Jerome James.
Those in attendance will be able to participate in the celebration through worship and the singing of gospel hymns. A reception will be held afterwards with refreshments provided by the Tuscarawas County Republican Women and the Tuscarawas County Council of Democratic Women.