The Rev. Roger Williams, pastor of the First Baptist Church of Glen Cove, said in a recent keynote speech at the Holocaust Museum and Tolerance Center of Nassau County, that “faith has been misused” and “has gone into the denial of constitutional rights.”
Williams’ speech at the museum in Glen Cove, coincided with a special Civil Rights exhibit commemorating the 50th anniversary of the 1963 March on Washington lead by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
“We are talking along the lines of how faith has been misused and how it has gone into the denial of constitutional rights,” Williams said. He discussed aspects of Dr. King’s “I Have A Dream” speech.
“On that day, our nation was asked...will we be what we say we are, or will we be a farce?...it was a daunting problem for America,” Williams said. Williams, who is also a board director of HMTC and president of the Glen Cove chapter of the N.A.A.C.P, touched on both the religious and constitutional basis for slavery prior to the Civil War.
“Slavery was a sanctioned institution on the premises that it was Biblical,” he said, noting that there were thousands ministers across the South who believed it was ordained by God based on erroneous doctrine. “So we have a precedent of how this misuse of the Bible and how faith can be used in America today,” he said.
“Currently, I believe we are seeing the same sort of abuse afoot when it comes to rendering rights and equality and freedom for certain citizens of this country,” Williams said. “I do believe there is hope. I do see those texts still in the Bible; however, the moral imagination of the people changed. It does say something about our interpretation.
“I do believe we still have one more opportunity to say to America that our nation will be for all people, and it is embedded in our constitution in the current debates we are hearing about what the Bible says about our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters.
He said that, “As people of faith, it is not our job to replace the constitutional rights of people in this country with what we believe are theological reflections...what gives religion embodiment is that its theological reflections are real and claimed by its adherers. When those theological reflections are made into law to govern citizens, whether they be religious or nonreligious, is a violation of the constitution of the United States of America.”
Before the talk, HMTC Chairman Steven Markowitz gave some background on the HMTC. “It can’t be just about the history, we have to make the lessons relevant to today. We have to teach the lessons of what hate leads to.”
Wednesday, 01 October 2014 00:00
In an unusual change of venue, the Glen Cove City Council held its Sept. 23 meeting at the Webb Institute instead of City Hall. Before the meeting, more than 100 residents and the council members were given a tour of the college.
Mayor Reginald Spinello said, “Keith Michel [Webb President] suggested we could use the venue for the city and I thought having a city council meeting there would be an ideal way to show off the city’s precious history. I am hoping that the Holocaust Center will also allow us the opportunity next year.” He added, “There are a few other notable places in Glen Cove to have meetings like this to showcase the city.”
Friday, 26 September 2014 00:00
It was a country flavor at Sea Cliff Beach on the evening of Sunday, Sept. 14 as the alternative/country group Antigone Rising played in front of hundreds of local residents underneath the fading sunlight. The concert, which was originally slated for Saturday but rescheduled due to inclement weather, went off without
a hitch as the ladies played a lot of their popular songs from different records.
Thursday, 25 September 2014 00:00
Glen Cove Junior Soccer got off on the right foot with its annual parade through the city ending at City Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 13. The parade had boys and girls from kindergarten to 10th grade march along with coaches and parents in their colorful uniforms. At the parade terminus, Glen Cove elected officials cheered the children on as they sat down on the field lines to hear the opening comments.
Thursday, 18 September 2014 00:00
Hundreds of supporters turned out on Monday, Sept. 8 to golf, socialize with friends and dine beach-side at the 25th anniversary of SCO Family
of Services’ Howard F. Treiber Memorial Golf Open, SCO’s major fall fundraiser benefiting the 60,000 children, teens, adults and families served each year. The event began with brunch and shotgun tee offs at Meadow Brook Club in Jericho and The Creek Club in Locust Valley and concluded with dinner beach-side at The Creek.