Keep the faith

Jon Meacham on MSNBC about the remembrance of John Lewis at the U.S. Capitol: “The secular and the sacred intersect in the Rotunda. … Lewis … was willing to die, to suffer for that vision (in the beatitudes) of Jesus. He heard the Gospel … as a young child. … What we will see … is the burial of a war hero. Not every war hero faces fire abroad. He faced fire in the states ….

“What we see there in that Rotunda–where (the sculpted icons of) Eisenhower, Lincoln, Grant, Jefferson, Washington, King and Reagan are—is a man who served … the nation and the cause of liberty, non-violently, consistently and (with) exemplary virtue. And the reason it’s so powerful is that we knew him. This is not some stained glass figure.”

In a July 27 opinion piece for The Washington Post, Meacham noted two Lewis quotes from the service in the Rotunda:

“When you see something that is not right, not fair, not just, you have to stand up, speak up, speak out, and find a way to get in the way and get in trouble. Good trouble. Necessary trouble.”

“There may be some setbacks, some delays, some disappointment, but you must never, ever give up or give in. You must keep the faith.”

One of 130 photographs in the July 26 Montgomery Advertiser article by Adam Tamburin, “A nation John Lewis helped unite salutes him on his final journey across Selma bridge,” (photo by Max Gersh/Advertiser)

The final remembrance for Lewis will be a private service today at 11 am (EDT) at the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta.

Addendum: Today, The New York Times published a letter to young Americans that Lewis recently wrote for publication on this day. The title page reads, “Together, You Can Redeem the Soul of Our Nation,” and “Though I am gone, I urge you to answer the highest calling of your heart and stand up for what you truly believe.”

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