By ANNE GREGORY
Media Relations, Manchester University
NORTH MANCHESTER — The Rev. Dr. Otis Moss Jr., a nationally respected and influential civil rights and religious leader, will speak at the 48th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Remembrance and Rededication Ceremony at Manchester University.
The observance commemorates King’s last speech at a college campus. He presented “The Future of Integration” at Manchester on Feb. 1, 1968, two months before he was slain in Memphis, Tenn.
Moss, a colleague and friend of King, will present “Learning from the Life and Teaching of Martin Luther King, Jr. from Generation to Generation” at 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 28, at Cordier Auditorium on the North Manchester campus. It is free and open to the public.
The grandson of a slave, Moss was raised in Georgia and educated at Morehouse College. A longtime advocate for education, civil and human rights, and social justice issues, he will use his experiences and insights to help Manchester students see themselves as part of an ongoing project, linking higher education to a principled and productive life.
Moss will speak about nonviolence, faith, co-existence and community, drawing upon his work with King and his understanding of Manchester’s mission. The Jan. 28 presentation is sponsored by the MU Office of Multicultural Affairs, Peace Studies Institute and Program for Conflict Resolution, and the President’s Office. It is part of the University’s Values, Ideas and the Arts series.
Moss has honorary degrees from eight colleges and universities and his work has taken him to Asia, South America, Europe and Africa.
In 2008, he retired from Olivet Institutional Baptist Church in Cleveland, Ohio, following 33 years of distinguished service. He also held pastoral positions at Mount Olive Baptist Church in La Grange, Ga., Providence Baptist Church in Atlanta, Ga., and Mount Zion Baptist Church in Lockland, Ohio. He was co-pastor with the Rev. Martin Luther King Sr. at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta.
Moss served as board member and regional director of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference during MLK’s tenure as founding president. He also served as a national board member and trustee of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change.