First Baptist Church honors locals at annual MLK event

Sammi Bray, center, receives her Martin Luther King Jr. award for character and citizenship at First Baptist Church. Her brother and mother are on the left. Southington Superintendent of Schools Tim Connellan and event committee member Lauren Johns, right, congratulate her.

DePaolo Middle School student Sammi Bray and Kennedy Middle School student Elijah Dialo were presented with the Martin Luther King Jr. awards at First Baptist Church of Southington on Sunday, Jan. 8 during the church’s 25 annual MLK celebration.

The award was presented to honor the local youths’ character and citizenship.

Guest speaker Tarold “Terry” Miller speaks about his diversity of life experiences at the annual event.

The theme of this year’s event was “Tell the Story…” Guest speaker Tarold “Terry” Miller spoke about his diversity of life experiences, focusing on youth, education, and community service.

Young singers comprising Spirit Joy Music Ministry presented “We are God’s Children” and “Spirit Joy” under the direction of Sister Marie Roccapriore with guitarist Jeff Bingham.

As is tradition, the event concluded with “Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing” by James Weldon Johnson. Organizers noted that this is the only event honoring King in Southington.

“Dr. King’s message of justice and dignity for all people is especially important today as new threats to personal rights and freedoms emerge daily,” said the First Baptist Church pastor Rev. Sharon Holt in a church press release. “It is also imperative that we embrace Dr. King’s belief in non-violent resistance.”

For more information about First Baptist Church of Southington, call (860) 628-8121 or visit the Facebook page.

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